The Territory Labor Government will invest $1.7 million a year over the next five years to secure annual Australian Football League (AFL) Premiership games in Darwin and Alice Springs from the 2019 AFL season.
An additional $600,000 a year will be invested in community programs that increase participation rates of women in AFL and to deliver grass-roots football programs to remote areas.
Treasurer Nicole Manison said the funding would see two AFL games a year hosted in the Territory from 2019 to 2023.
“Budget 2018 will create more jobs and attract more people to the Territory and one of the ways we can do this is to continue bringing top-class sporting events here,” Ms Manison said.
“Territorians love their footy and delivery of big games like this is a real boost for Territory lifestyle, which is so important in keeping people living in the NT.
“This year our high profile games include Melbourne Demons v’s Adelaide Crows in Alice Springs and Melbourne Demons v’s Freemantle Dockers in Darwin, and we look forward to seeing more premier games.
“AFL is not just a sport for us in the NT, it’s a great social, economic and cultural contributor that brings communities together and provides important opportunities for so many Territorians.
“Hosting national sporting events such as the AFL showcases the fantastic sporting culture and the facilities we have here in the Territory.”
AFLNT CEO Stu Totham said "AFLNT has welcomed the Northern Territory Government’s weekend announcement and we look forward to working towards a greater AFL presence across the NT".