Costly Olympics - The Missourian: Editorials

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Costly Olympics

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Posted: Wednesday, February 5, 2014 5:32 am

Countries spend millions, now billions, of dollars trying to obtain Olympic Games. That’s only the beginning in costs to host the events, such as the Winter Games in Sochi, Russia. To prepare the locations for the games runs into billions of dollars.

Russia’s cost overruns are causing political unrest, and reports say their leader, Vladimir Putin, is fuming over the situation. Heads have started to roll. There also have been reports of corruption in preparing the venues for the games.

Sochi is the most expensive Olympic Games in history. The cost so far, as reported by news sources, is about $50 billion. The estimate in 2007, when Sochi was selected as the site for the Winter Games, was $12 billion.

China spent about $40 billion in hosting the Summer Olympics in 2008 in Beijing. That had been the record. Both China and Russia viewed hosting Olympic Games as an opportunity to show the world that they have entered the modern era with first-class facilities. They believed the Olympic Games would boost their standings in the world as economic powers.

The added security at Sochi also is costly to Russia. Other Olympic Games didn’t have to deal with the threats such as they are at Sochi.

With costs running this high, will there be as much interest in hosting the Olympics in the future? The costs will lead to some countries dropping out of the competition. But with the interest there is, other countries with some of the facilities, including infrastructure, already in place will seek the Games.

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