Economic Development Minister Simon Bridges and Sport and Recreation Minister Jonathan Coleman congratulate organisers and participants on the outstanding success of the World Masters Games 2017 as the games draw to a close at a ceremony in Auckland today.

“The World Masters Games is the largest major event that New Zealand has hosted since the Rugby World Cup 2011,” says Mr Bridges.

“Hosting major events in New Zealand provides a welcome boost to our economy. With the majority of the events based in Auckland, it is estimated that the games have contributed 244,000 visitor nights and added $30.8 million to Auckland’s GDP.

“Further to this it is estimated that the games have contributed $53 million to GDP and a 266,000 visitor nights to the wider New Zealand economy.

“Under the Major Events Development Fund, the Government has invested $11 million into the event, making it the largest investment from the fund to date. Auckland Tourism Events and Economic Development (ATEED) must also be acknowledged for their significant $11.75 million commitment.”

“Held every four years, the World Masters Games is the world’s largest multi-sport event, and this year attracted almost 25,000 athletes aged between 25 and 101 years of age, from over 100 countries across 28 sports,” says Dr Coleman

“Major events are a great way to showcase New Zealand to the rest of the world, many of the participants have extended their stay to sample our kiwi hospitality and iconic sights.

“This event shows that it is never too late to be a competitive athlete. The participants have made a significant contribution towards the Games ‘sport for all’ philosophy.”

Dr Coleman said at the closing ceremony today that the ninth World Masters Games has been without a doubt a massive celebration in active participation and sportsmanship.

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