The Australian government's 2010 federal budget includes a significant spending increase on sport.
Around US$290 million has been pledged to Australian sport for the next four years, US$195.2 million of which is new funding. US$237 million will go towards elite sport, including talent development and scouting programmes. High performance programmes for athletes preparing for major events, such as the London 2012 Olympic Games, will receive US$52 million. US$71 million will go to grass-roots and community schemes, with another US$16 million reserved for Paralympic funding.
A statement issued on behalf of the Australian minister for sport, Kate Ellis MP, hailed "the biggest funding injection to sport in our nation’s history", and said: "The Rudd government is forging a new way forward for Australian sport. ‘Australian Sport: The Pathway to Success’ delivers on the Rudd Government’s commitment to boost funding to both community and elite sport. For the first time, it also delivers significant investment to the all-important development pathway - the vital link connecting grassroots and high performance sport."
Australian Olympic Committee president John Coates said: "As far as the elite side is concerned, it ticks every box. It will ensure the Australian Olympic team that goes to London... and the winter team will be able to compete on an equal footing with our competitors."