Aotearoa New Zealand and Australia led a successful “As One” bid for the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023™. This page contains information about the bid, Government investment in the tournament, and expected social and economic benefits for Aotearoa New Zealand.
Successful Trans-Tasman bid
In an incredible moment for our country and for women’s sport, on 26 June 2020, FIFA announced that Aotearoa New Zealand and Australia had won a joint bid to co-host the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023™.
Following a successful Trans-Tasman #AsOne bid, Aotearoa New Zealand and Australia won the co-hosting rights to the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023™. This presented an incredible opportunity to deliver a tournament that is going through exceptional growth and at a time when there has never been greater focus on women in sport.
The FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023™ is one of the most significant events Aotearoa New Zealand has ever hosted. It was also the largest FIFA Women’s World Cup ever, involving 32 teams for the first time.
The FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023™ rounded off an amazing two years where Aotearoa New Zealand was at the heart of women’s sport internationally. In 2022, we hosted the Rugby World Cup, the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup and the International Working Group World Conference on Women and Sport. These were all huge milestones in raising the value and visibility of women’s sport, growing female participation, and creating new female sporting heroes and leaders.
Government investment in the event
The New Zealand Government set aside up to $55 million to support the co-hosting of the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023™. This includes $19 million for significant upgrades to sporting facilities – including $5 million for gender-neutral changing room upgrades, $10 million for a leverage and legacy programme, $9.25 million to FIFA for event delivery, $2.475 million to New Zealand Football for its legacy programme, and $4.8 million retained by government to cover costs of supporting a seamless delivery of the event at home.
This investment ensured a seamless tournament was delivered and help to maximise the benefits of co-hosting the largest women’s sporting event in the world, for Aotearoa New Zealand and New Zealanders. It helped to leverage the event at home – in particular, supporting and growing the involvement of women and girls in all aspects of sport and wider society – and will leave a lasting legacy for our communities in years to come.
Benefits of co-hosting the event
The FIFA Women’s World Cup™ is the largest women’s sporting event on the planet, with this years’ tournament aiming to captivate a record audience of up to two billion people across the globe. Hosting an event of this magnitude put Aotearoa New Zealand front and centre on the world stage, generated significant social and economic benefits, and leaves a lasting legacy for football and women’s sport in this country, and our communities.
It was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for many New Zealanders to experience a high-profile FIFA World Cup event, come together to support our national team on home soil, and watch some of the world’s best football players in action.
There are also social and economic benefits of hosting the world’s largest women’s sporting event at a time when the value and visibility of women’s sport is growing exponentially around the world.
Pre-event evaluation report
In 2019, MBIE commissioned a pre-event evaluation report to evaluate the potential costs and benefits to Aotearoa New Zealand and the combined host regions of co-hosting the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023™ to help inform public-sector investment decisions.
At the time the pre-event evaluation was undertaken, there were a lot of variables, such as how many matches Aotearoa New Zealand would hold, which New Zealand cities matches would be played in and which teams would be based here – influencing the number of international visitors.
The pre-event evaluation forecast around 22,000 international visitors to New Zealand and a total of 335,000 international visitor nights. Overall, the pre-event evaluation forecast a positive return on investment, with a cost benefit ratio of 1.20. This was considered a conservative estimate at the time.
Since then, COVID-19 has changed the global landscape, New Zealand has hosted three other major international women’s sporting events, support for women’s sport has taken off around the world, and we now know we are hosting the reigning world champions, the United States. We’ve also developed a $10 million leverage and legacy programme for the event which will help secure more significant social and economic benefits for our country and our communities.
Post event evaluation report
MBIE has commissioned a post-event evaluation, which will be released following the tournament.