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SBD Global/June 25, 2012/Olympics

Economic Benefits Of Hosting Olympics Questioned

With the cost of hosting the Olympic Games "soaring," the economic benefits "have been called into question as the global economy faces a slowdown in growth," according to the AFP. The London Olympics "are expected to come in with" a €12B ($15B) price tag. Sochi 2014 is expected to be "the most expensive winter games" with a cost of €24B ($30B). While the "blame is laid on the demands made by IOC," host cities and nations often use the games as "a pretext to launch massive infrastructure and construction projects." Then-IOC Chair Jacques Rogge said in '08, "The Olympic Games are often a means to concentrate into two or three years the investments that would normally be spread out over 20 years." IOC Exec Dir Gilbert Felli said of Rio de Janiero's redevelopment plans for the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Summer Olympics, "Yes, the IOC has tried to keep down the costs. But if a city wants to profit from the Games to build a new metro, rebuild half of its neighborhoods, there’s nothing you can do" (AFP, 6/24).
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