Olympic and World Cup Fever – Brazilian Style

Olympic and World Cup Fever – Brazilian Style

Comment: Winning and hosting the London 2012 Olympics has been a great boost to UK, not only in terms of feel good factor, but through a prolonged period of investment ranging from transport and infrastructure to hotels and tourism.

UK companies supplying Olympics 2012 should not waste the knowledge they’ve built up but should turn their eyes to the next great Olympic project – Brazil 2016.

Rio de Janeiro beat Chicago, Madrid, and Tokyo to host the 2016 Summer Olympics, which will be the first Olympics held in South America and the second in a BRICS country after Beijing.

In addition to the spotlight on Rio de Janeiro, hosting the Olympic Games would also deliver a huge economic boon to the city, region, and country already begun by hosting the World in 2014.

For the World Cup, besides investments in stadiums, there is a plan to invest another US$ 35 billion in public transport, US$ 3.9 billion in airports, US$ 425 million in ports, US$ 1.5 billion in energy, US$ 7.1 billion in water supply, US$ 7.3 billion in hotels, US$ 674 million in hospitals and US$ 720 million in security. It is estimated that the 2014 World Cup, will drive more than US$ 80 billion into the Brazilian economy, but for every US$ 1 invested by the Brazilian government, an additional US$ 3.26 of private money will be invested in supply chains related to the games.

The benefits of hosting the 2014 World Cup include not only the investments in infrastructure and the money spent by tourists during the tournament, but also other sustainable legacies, such as, a long-term increase in the number of international tourists and foreign investments and other less tangible benefits, such as, the swell in national pride.  Hosting the Football World Cup two years earlier in 2014 means that most direct and indirect businesses that profit from it can easily adapt their products and services to the Rio Olympics in 2016.

The Rio 2016 spokesman Bernardo Domingues stated,

“The expected gross economic impact of the 2016 Games on the Brazilian economy is US$51.1 billion, according to a University of São Paulo study commissioned by the Ministry of Sport in 2009.”

Employment improvement will also be a significant legacy. Sectors related to tourism, construction, electricity, IT, telecom, creative industries and financial services are those that will see the most job creation.  Around 120,000 jobs per year are expected to be created as a consequence of the Games until 2016, and then a further 130,000 jobs per year until 2027 according to research by the Ministry of Sport.

But it is the tourism industry that hopes to benefit the most, long term, well and truly putting Rio top of the list of world tourism destinations. According to Embratur, Brazil’s Tourism Authority, 1.4 million tourists visit Rio every year and this is expected to more than double, increasing to 3.3 million. For Brazil, the goal is to increase the number from 5 to 10 million visitors annually.

The World Cup alone is expected to generate R$5.94 billion for the tourism sector according to independent research. With regard to tourism, the Mayor of Rio, Eduardo Paes, said,

“About 12,000 new rooms are predicted by 2015, 5,400 of them are already under construction.”

With this backdrop, UK companies and exporters can find a real market for their Olympic expertise.


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