14 Sep 2011

Report estimates $400m benefit from hosting Cup

7:41 am on 14 September 2011

A new report estimates the Rugby World Cup will inject an extra $400 million into the local economy and contribute $2 billion to the global sports economy.

The report was commissioned by tournament sponsors, Mastercard and looks at both the short term and long term financial gains.

The research was carried out by Coventry University's Centre for the International Business of Sport.

It says by the end of the decade, consumer spending in the sport economy could total $1.2 billion and estimates sport-related economic activity could hit $14 billion within the same period.

It says to achieve this, New Zealand would have to capitalise on the hosting of the Cup to attract future events and also further develop its reputation as a destination for sports tourism.

In the shorter term, it is expected that overseas visitors will bring in $411 million that would not otherwise have entered the New Zealand economy.

However the predictions have been called into question by the principal economist at the New Zealand Institute of Economic Research.

Shamubeel Eaqub says long term effects are very difficult to measure accurately and, more often than not, very small benefits accrue over time.

He says the direct economic impact of the Rugby World Cup should be known next year when it will be possible to assess how much spending took place balanced against the investment made to host the event.