The purpose of Christchurch’s Antarctic Gateway Strategy is to set goals and actions that will maximise the value of being one of only five Antarctic gateway cities in the world.

Christchurch is one of five Antarctic gateway cities globally and one of two which provide access to the Ross Sea area.

The five Antarctic gateway cities are:

  • Christchurch, New Zealand
  • Hobart, Australia
  • Ushuaia, Argentina
  • Punta Arenas, Chile
  • Cape Town, South Africa

Our city has been operating as a gateway to the Antarctic region since the early 20th century. The city has a role in supporting international and New Zealand Antarctic priorities as articulated through the Antarctic Treaty System and New Zealand’s responsibilities regarding the Ross Dependency.

Christchurch’s involvement with Antarctica(external link) and the Southern Ocean is an important source of revenue for the local economy – supporting logistic suppliers, the visitor economy, education and research activity. Our Council-owned air and sea ports are important logistics hubs for the Antarctic region.

This strategy supports Christchurch to:

  • Deliver on its responsibilities as a gateway city in the context of New Zealand’s Antarctic priorities and international relations.
  • Leverage the gateway city opportunity to enhance Christchurch’s identity, support its strategic priorities, create economic and learning opportunities and enable community engagement and pride.