The Government of Estonia decided on today’s (March 25) meeting to allocate 2.5 million euros from the reserves for the organisation of FIA Rally World Championship round taking place in Estonia this year. Via international broadcasting, this major sports event is taken to hundreds of millions of people in 155 countries.
"Last year the first ever WRC round in Estonia was so successful that it has been included in the WRC calendar for 2021 and 2022 as well. The government supports the event as we believe in the success of the Rally Estonia team, who has led the project professionally for 11 consecutive years,“ said Anneli Ott, Minister of Culture. “It is also noteworthy that last year not a single infection was detected at a rally event, and the organisers are cooperating effectively with the Health Board to ensure that the participants and guests could safely enjoy the competition,” she added.
The WRC round represents an opportunity to promote Estonia, its culture and history, and it also has a positive effect on the economy. “This is a major sports event that brings the world’s top racers and teams, who are followed by millions of fans all over the world, to compete on the fast-paced gravel roads of South Estonia,“ the minister added.
The Government supports the organisation of the WRC round, as it is not possible to finance it in the requested amount from the 2021 incentive for international culture and sports events. The reason for this is that the economic impact of the event is expected to decrease this year due to the restrictions connected to the spread of Covid-19. Therefore, the project did not meet the incentive requirements. The allocated support is not considered state aid, as the supported event is an official competition of the world championship round which belongs to the system of international sporting events of a sports federation. The total budget for organising WRC Rally Estonia is 4.4 million euros.
Last year, the WRC Rally Estonia was held in Estonia for the first time. Despite the restrictions related to Covid-19, the event had over 26,000 visitors from Estonia and abroad. This was also the first WRC round that was organised after the coronavirus outbreak. Live broadcasts were produced all over the world, which took the most important sports event held in Estonia to 740 million people.
Rally Estonia is the official FIA Rally World Championship round for 2021 that will be held in Tartu and in Tartu county and the roads of Otepää, Elva, Kanepi, Kambja, Mustvee and Peipsiääre from 15 to 18 July 2021.