The NZ Marine Industry Association has reported that many superyacht owners have cancelled plans to visit New Zealand for the America’s Cup.
Peter Busfield, the executive director for the NZ Marine Industry Association, recently told TVNZ’s Breakfast show that the expected 100+ superyachts had now dropped to only 50 to 60 yachts, due to the owners not being allowed to fly into New Zealand and join their boat.
When COVID-19 hit earlier this year, New Zealand closed its borders to international visitors.
Restrictions have since been eased to allow the staff and family members of the challenger America’s Cup teams to enter the country.
The marine-trade association has petitioned the government to extend these same benefits to superyacht owners, but without any response to date.
Busfield claimed that the average yacht would spend NZ$2 million (about £1.03 million) including refit, maintenance and expenditures by owners, guests and crew.
The industry wants owners to be COVID tested before departing their home country and then enter quarantine in New Zealand.
Last week it was announced that the 2020 Auckland Boat Show had been cancelled.
The show, run by the NZ Marine Industry AssociationIt was due to run from 8 to 11 October 2020.