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SBD Global/November 26, 2012/Finance

South African Government Reveals Costs Of More Than $3B For 2010 World Cup

The South African government said that the country spent more than 27B rand ($3B) on the 2010 World Cup, and in return gained an ''intangible legacy'' from the first world football showpiece in Africa, according to the AP. In the ''2010 FIFA World Cup Country Report,'' released nearly 2 1/2 years after the event, South Africa's government said that it "spent $1.1B on building and upgrading stadiums alone." FIFA reported that it made a $631M profit from the '07-10 World Cup cycle and earned income of $3.65B from 2010 World Cup contracts (AP, 11/23). The SATURDAY STAR wrote that one economist believed it was "money well spent." In the absence of any final definitive figures on how much was earned in total from being the host, the report said that the World Cup had left an "intangible legacy of pride and unity among South Africans and had changed the country’s image as undeveloped, crime-ridden and dangerous in the eyes of the rest of the world." The report, published by the ministry of sport, added light-heartedly, "To top it all, we didn’t have lions roaming the streets and we did have ATMs," Economist Dawie Roodt said, "For R27B I would host the World Cup anytime. It’s one of those things that are unprofitable but highly beneficial to the country. We hosted a magnificent World Cup, and you can’t put a price on that. The legacy that we have gained is priceless." Another economist Mike Schussler said that economically, South Africa was "never going to make the money" it spent on the event back. Schussler said, "Economically it doesn't make sense, but most sporting events don’t make money back, and I think we have learnt this the hard way with the 2010 World Cup here" (SATURDAY STAR, 11/24).
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