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SBD Global/June 11, 2014/Finance

Looking Back At 2010 World Cup In South Africa A Warning For Brazil

As the football world descends on Brazil for the FIFA World Cup this week, "disillusionment over the last tournament still lingers in South Africa," according to Matt Egan of CNN MONEY. The 2010 World Cup "boosted tourism and national pride, but it's clear the economic benefits failed to live up to the hype." Stellenbosch University economics professor Johan Fourie said, "There's certainly been a benefit -- but at what cost?" There "is ample research that suggests the impact of pricey sporting events tends to be brief and limited for host countries." According to estimates, South Africa shelled out about $3.9B on the '10 games. One research paper published in the Journal of African Economies calculates that South Africa "attracted about 220,000 extra tourists from countries outside southern Africa during the 2010 World Cup and 300,000 over the entire year." That means the country spent a whopping $13,000 per visitor. Some of the money spent on the 2010 World Cup "went into infrastructure projects aimed at meeting demand for the games, increasing foreign investment and improving the lives of South Africans." That includes a state-of-the-art rail system, renovations to major airports and highway improvements. Fourie: "It's all because of the World Cup" (CNN MONEY, 6/10).
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