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The department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries expects all West Australians to have the same opportunities as their eastern states counterparts to participate and compete in the national sport system.


A strong and equitable national sport system ensures that all athletes are provided with the same opportunities. The National Sport and Active Recreation Policy Framework signed by Ministers of Sport and Recreation in 2011 provides a mechanism for engaging the whole sport and recreation industry in the achievement of national goals. In order to achieve the objectives outlined in the Framework, inequities in the existing system need to be resolved.


Hosting national championships

Every state and territory should to have the opportunity to host national championships. Hosting national championships can result in a series of benefits, such as facility development, development of personnel, exposure of the sport and talent identification.

The State Government contributes funding to recognised State Sporting Associations (SSA) through the Sports Lotteries Account to enable Western Australian (WA) state teams and athletes to travel and compete in national championships. In addition, the department has introduced supporting strategies such as the Athlete Travel Subsidy Scheme to ensure WA based eligible athletes are provided the same opportunities to compete as their eastern counterparts.

The department expects National Sporting Organisations (NSO) to adopt an equitable approach to national championships that enhances the nationwide development of their sport and provides all eligible jurisdictions with an opportunity to these events.

Fare equalisation

On 12 November 2004, the Sport and Recreation Ministers’ Council decision (Minutes 12 November 2004) endorsed the following principle regarding fare equalisation:

The travel costs of participation in national competitions and sport development initiatives (such as meeting, working parties, officials training, etc.) should be equal for all representative players and key officials (coaches, managers, umpires).

The fare equalisation principle is integral to the sustainability of a national sport system. National Sporting Organisations should have the relevant policies and practices in place in order to adhere to the principles of fare equalisation.

No jurisdiction should be disadvantaged due to the tyranny of distance. Equity in travel costs to national events should be an intrinsic value in the national sport system.

National league teams

Over the past two decades national league competitions have become an important part of the Australian sporting landscape. These competitions are viewed as a means to providing:

  • Elite competition and athlete development pathways towards national representative teams
  • Profile of the sports across Australia
  • A potential revenue base for the NSO.

Work completed by the Standing Committee on Recreation and Sport determined that it is likely that there is a saturation level at which Australian capital cities can no longer support additional teams and unable to support additional leagues. Any general economic downturn will negatively impact upon sport sponsorship and the health of a national league. With this in mind, the department has concerns when national league governing bodies make decisions in isolation and do not consult with the impacted State Government or SSA who support their existence.

The most successful national leagues, in terms of financial viability, have a fundamentally sound product which is fun to play and watch on television and a competition that is evenly balanced. The department continues to support WA-based national league teams and expects all NSOs and league governing bodies to engage more frequently with impacted jurisdictions on key operational decisions regarding their competitions.


Senior Policy Officer
Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries – Sport and Recreation
Telephone 61 8 6552 7300



01 February 2015


01 February 2017

Page reviewed 11 September 2023