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Efforts underway to secure new deal

By Helen Grieg

RAROTONGA, Cook Islands (Cook Islands News, June 3, 209) – Games minister Wilkie Rasmussen says the Cooks may end up going ahead with the games in September without a host broadcaster.

This would mean plans to broadcast the games via television and radio to the Pacific would be canned.

Rasmussen confirmed yesterday that Australian Media Consultants’ (AMC) Mike Williams has written to the games company to withdraw from the host broadcasting deal.

"CISNOC is still trying to get Mike Williams to come here to talk over the possibility of an amended host broadcasting agreement," says Rasmussen.

The appointment of a host broadcaster is the only issue left to be resolved for the games. Rasmussen now says there is always the option of waiving the broadcasting requirement.

Government has recently made it clear that it believes AMC is asking to be paid too much for the host broadcasting. The deal is reported to be worth around $500,000.

"For the time frame that’s there and for the services that will be provided and for what the Cook Islands government gets in return and we reserve the right therefore to renegotiate that agreement. But we do not believe that the broadcasting of the games is actually an integral matter of the games, the broadcasting aspect of it is sponsorship but we don’t have regional sponsorship," Rasmussen told Radio NZ last week.

Meantime, Rasmussen says attempts are being made to negotiate a better deal with AMC before considering options.

Cook Islands News © 2009 All rights reserved.

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