23 Nov 2007

Fears in the Cook Islands about maintenance costs for new sports stadium

3:21 pm on 23 November 2007

The government of the Cook Islands is being advised to think again about the size of the sports stadium it is planning to have built for the 2009 Pacific Mini Games.

Besides hosting the 2009 mini-games, the stadium will later be used for the World Youth Netball championships, but government officials are concerned at the cost of ongoing maintenance.

A financial analysis shows that there will be a profit of more than two million US dollars from the games in 2009, but the Financial Secretary to the government, Sholan Ivaiti, says the impact of the stadium's maintenance costs on future budgets has to be considered.

"Our issue was more constructing a big white elephant and the costs ot this white elephant afterwards. You can imagine, if you build an eleven million dollar building. If the quality of the building is not of a high quality, then the repairs and maintenance in future years are going to be quite excessive."

Sholan Ivaiti.

A major share of the stadium's construction costs is going to be met by a grant from China.