Auckland, March 17, 2019
Auckland Council will consider this week $63.3 million of financial support for Eden Park incorporating existing loans and guarantees already provided by Council.
The funding will be considered by Councillors at the Tuesday Finance and Performance Committee and will comprise Council taking over the current $40 million loan and $7 million working capital facility from ASB and combining them with an existing $6.5 million loan from Council.
The $63.3 million also includes a new $9.8 million loan facility which would allow the Trust to fund its programme of essential capital works.
Hand-Up not Hand-Out
Mayor Phil Goff issued the following Statement:
This is a hand-up to Eden Park, not a hand-out. The money is repayable.
What it does allow is Eden Park to continue as Auckland’s venue for international sporting events in rugby, cricket and other sports for the medium term.
Eden Park faces significant financial pressure.
Auckland Council taking the loan over from ASB eases some demands on repayments and the new loan of $9.8 million, in the form of a repayable credit facility, will enable Eden Park to fund much needed maintenance and renewals including turf replacement and stand upgrades.
Ratepayers will welcome Council’s proposal to issue its support as a loan rather than a grant. We have a responsibility to protect any financial investment by Aucklanders in Eden Park given that we do not own or control the Park.
It is only fair that investment made by Aucklanders through Council in the Park comes back to them when Eden Park Trust is in a better financial position or sells the asset.
The proposal will also be conditional on a much closer working relationship between Council, Eden Park Trust and Regional Facilities Auckland.
All organisations need to work together to ensure that we have in place a joint strategy that can achieve less duplication, lower costs and better utilisation of Auckland’s stadiums.
The Council’s proposal will allow Eden Park to continue to play its role as an important sporting and event venue for Auckland for the next 10 to 15 years.