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World Rally Championship

Volume 690: debated on Wednesday 3 March 2021

What representations he has received on a potential world rally championship round taking place in Northern Ireland. (912614)

This Government will always do what they can to champion Northern Ireland tourism, which in normal times includes major sporting events. I know that the Northern Ireland Economy Minister was giving consideration to hosting the world rally championship, for which the hon. Member for North Antrim (Ian Paisley) has been a strong champion in the House. The Government will happily support the Executive should they decide to proceed with funding the event, but ultimately, this is a matter for the Executive.

I thank my hon. Friend for that answer. The United Kingdom proudly sits at the heart of global motorsports, having hosted a round of the world rally championship virtually every year since its inception in 1973. Does my hon. Friend agree with me that it is important that the UK continues to host a round of that championship, and will he do everything possible to work with the Northern Ireland Executive and all parties involved to see a round of the WRC hosted in Northern Ireland in the coming years?

I wish my hon. Friend a happy birthday, and I welcome the points he makes about the UK’s leadership in the space of motorsports. I think Northern Ireland would produce an excellent backdrop for hosting an event of that sort, and I would be very happy to continue to work to support the Executive in that regard with any future bids.