A Cork TD has said the opportunity for Cork to host the 2024 America’s Cup yacht race would have huge economic benefits for the country "must not be passed up".
Cork East Fine Gael TD David Stanton said he hopes Ireland will be chosen as the venue for the sailing competition after organisers announced an extension to the selection process on Thursday night.
The Government said it would need another six months to conduct due diligence on the cost-benefit of hosting the event.
It was feared that this stance spelled the end of Ireland's bid and that race organisers would look to the other bidders still in the running but the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron (RNZYS) and the cup defenders, Emirates Team New Zealand (ETNZ), announced on Thursday night that they are extending the selection period for the short-listed offshore venues to continue to work through final details and provide further information required for their respective bids.
Speaking about the decision, Deputy Stanton said: “There has been much commentary about the possibility of Cork Harbour hosting the America’s Cup sailing event, but I believe that we would not be forgiven if we did not do everything possible to bring one of the most prestigious global sporting events to Ireland.
“...Cork in my opinion is a perfect venue.
“According to media reports, the projected cost of hosting the event has been put at €200 million, however, an analysis by a consultancy firm has found that it could create an economic windfall of approximately €400 million for the region while creating hundreds of jobs,” he said.
He said that the considerable works that have been conducted in recent years to improve water quality in Cork Harbour have supported the uptake of water sports and marine leisure activities and that it is “little surprise that Cork Harbour is being considered as a venue by global event organisers and this opportunity must not be passed up”.