Country99TV is committed to providing interesting and relevant information and entertainment to farmers and the rural community throughout New Zealand. Continuing this commitment, Country99TV is thrilled to confirm they are the official television partner to the 2011 New Zealand National Agricultural Fieldays, taking place on 15th – 18th June, 2011, and will be available FREE to all SKY viewers over this time.

New Zealand is a world leader in agriculture and pastoral farming and the National Fieldays is the ultimate launch platform for cutting edge agricultural technology and innovation. The New Zealand National Agricultural Fieldays is the largest agribusiness exhibition in the Southern Hemisphere.

The National Fieldays is essential in keeping up with the latest trends and developments in the agriculture and farming industries and attracts in excess of 130,000 visitors from around New Zealand and internationally from 38 different countries.

Country99TV will be there, giving you exclusive access to one of the largest events on the New Zealand calendar.

Live and exclusive coverage will commence from Midday on Wednesday 15th June and will include the opening ceremony, live crosses every hour to an Exhibitor’s Site, exhibitors highlights programmes and a special Fieldays highlights programme. (A repeat schedule will also be available.)

Country99TV will be on-site covering all the action and is thrilled to be able to provide FREE access to Country99TV (SKY Channel 99) to all SKY subscribers over all four days.

“As part of our commitment to the rural community throughout New Zealand we are thrilled that we are the official broadcaster to such an important event within that community,” comments Helen Ryan, General Manager Programming, Country99TV.

“Going free to all over this time allows people that can’t make the event the opportunity to get a front row seat and also sample other programming that Country99TV has to offer.”

Join Country99TV presenters Mark Leishman, rural weather expert Philip Duncan, Genevieve Westcott, John Stewart and Mandi McLeod as they bring you exclusive coverage from the 2011 New Zealand National Agricultural Fieldays.

Join host Genevieve Westcott for your weekly financial information when MONEY TALKS premieres on Country99TV, Wednesday May 4 at 8.30pm. 

James Shortall, ASB’s Rural Economist, is a regular guest on the show and joins Genevieve and special guest, Nevil Gibson, Editor in Chief of The National Business Review and NBR Online. 

Mr Gibson oversees three NBR newsletters on the food industry, legal affairs, and commercial property. He also writes about business books in Unlimited magazine and films in NZ Catholic. He judges several business awards, including Auckland’s regional awards, and for Indian and Pacific businesses. 

In a recent announcement the New Zealand Government has confirmed a contestable fund worth $850,000 to drive further growth of the red meat industry. 

The Red Meat Market Development Contestable Fund is a joint initiative between New Zealand Trade and Enterprise and Beef and Lamb, with funding allocated to successful applicants on a 50/50 basis. 

The fund is aimed to encourage innovative industryled projects that would lift the profitability, competitiveness and sustainable growth of the meat sector. 

The New Zealand red meat industry was New Zealand’s second-largest export earner, which was worth $5 billion in export revenue last year. 

This week on MONEY TALKS, find out the latest New Zealand trade data and learn more about Prime Minister John Key’s European visit. 

Bilateral trade between New Zealand and the 27 EU nations is worth $12b each year, on the same scale as commerce with China and the United States. 

The MONEY TALKS panel of experts also delve into the latest rural economic intelligence from ASB’s April report. 

“Currency strategists pick the NZD to strengthen across the board,” says James Shortall. 

“Global research suggests with about 300-350 major natural disasters, global growth will be shaved by 0.2%,” adds Shortall. 

Find out more about food price inflation, with global food prices up 46% over the past four years, according to the Food & Agriculture Organisation. 

The MONEY TALKS panel also looks into commodity prices which are seeing the largest boom in more that 100 years, with China – and not speculators – driving the rise. 

With global dairy prices riding high, the team discloses what our experts are watching as dairy production in the United States continues with its steady increase. For all this and more join Genevieve and her panel of special guests on MONEY TALKS, premiering on Country99TV, Wednesday 4th May at 8.30pm.

Country99TV is pleased to announce they have secured exclusive pay television broadcast rights to coverage of Mark Todd’s history making comeback at the 2011 Badminton Horse Trials.

The Badminton Horse Trials is one of the toughest and most exciting equestrian events – the pinnacle of the world’s 3-Day-Event calendar. 

As the name suggests horses and riders complete the competition over 3 days, each day consisting of a different discipline or phase. Horses and riders must complete a dressage test demonstrating Obedience, Discipline, Accuracy and Elegance. They need to be fit and athletic to complete a 4 mile cross country ride jumping solid man-made and natural obstacles within a set time. 

Finally they must complete a course of show-jumps designed to test their agility and accuracy at speed.

Mark Todd is among the most celebrated New Zealand sportsmen, with two Olympic gold medals and numerous other honours. 

He was named to compete in six successive Olympic Games, though he missed the first games, in Moscow in 1980, because of the American-led boycott.

Mark was a pioneer of three-day eventing in New Zealand and, in 1978, was part of New Zealand’s first three-day eventing team to contest a world championship. 

In his first attempt at Badminton in 1980, riding Southern Comfort, Todd was 45th after the dressage, but was one of only three inside the time limit on the cross-country. Going into the final day he was third. When other riders came unstuck during the show jumping, Todd was Badminton champion. It was his first major victory in what was to become a glittering 20-year career at the top. He remains the only person to win back-to-back individual Olympic titles since World War II.

Please visit for screening times, details on how to subscribe to Country99TV and all other equestrian coverage.