The New Zealand Government, through New Zealand Major Events, works in partnership with the event sector to ensure Major Events benefit New Zealand.

Major Events vision and purpose

Government is involved in major events to achieve specific benefits, including (immediate) economic benefits and also a wider range of outcomes, such as increased national pride and improved social connectedness.


Our major events benefit all people who call Aotearoa New Zealand home.


The Major Events team is the Government’s lead agency for major events across prospecting, investment and ‘whole of Government’ coordination functions.  The role of the Major Events team has shifted under the direction introduced in 2019 to better align with the opportunities that a more mature events industry offers to Government.  It will focus on four primary roles:

  1. To be an advisor to Ministers on the alignment of events to government objectives.
  2. To be the link between the events sector and the operational and leverage arms of government.
  3. To be an investor in events to achieve outcomes that align with government priorities.
  4. To partner with other event stakeholders to attract, deliver and leverage major events.


The government invests in major events that generate significant immediate and long-term benefits and align with wider government objectives through leverage and legacy opportunities. 

Statement of Investment Priority

Following the review of the Major Events Fund, a Statement of Investment Priority (SIP) has been introduced. This means that the Major Events Fund will give priority to events in New Zealand that are, or have the potential to be, internationally significant and which create social connection, reflect and celebrate New Zealand culture and build national pride.

Sports events must pursue high performance outcomes, engage with targeted populations and have a commitment to wellbeing outcomes through sport and increasing physical activity levels ("targeted populations" are defined on definition of terms.)

Creative and cultural events must create opportunities to profile and celebrate New Zealand's national identity, with a focus on Māori and Pasifika arts and culture

Wider benefits:

Other event criteria that will be considered when assessing applications include (but are not limited to):

  • Generate a net economic benefit to New Zealand;
  • Have substantial interest from outside the region in which it will take place;
  • Provide an opportunity to promote “brand New Zealand”, telling New Zealand’s story in key international markets, specifically priority markets as identified by Tourism New Zealand and New Zealand Trade and Enterprise;
  • Provide business, sector, diplomatic and trade opportunities, specifically in priority areas identified by New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade and the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment;
  • Increase the profile and engagement in sports, arts or culture
  • Be timed to fall within off-peak or shoulder tourism periods
  • Support regional dispersal;
  • Establish or develop a home-grown event that can be retained for New Zealand;
  • Be financially supported by local government and / or local development agencies;
  • Does not significantly conflict with other major events being staged in New Zealand;
  • Have at least two government agencies interested in leveraging the event
  • Have a lead time of two years or longer;
  • Have a financial sustainability plan that demonstrates how they will become sustainable past government investment (for recurring events).