Spanish Government Backs Madrid 2020 Bid Going Ahead

July 27, 2012

Spain’s Secretary of State for Sport Miguel Cardenal insists Madrid is right to go ahead with its bid for the 2020 Olympic Games despite the eurozone crisis.

The country has been hit hard by debts, with talk of them requiring a bail-out, and although Rome has pulled out of the running due to the financial situation, the Spanish capital is desperate to land the Games.

It has been a Candidate City for the 2012 and 2016 Games, won by London and Rio respectively, and with much of the investment in the bid already received, Cardenal is unconcerned.

“The analysis that we have from the Spanish government is that the Olympic Games are not merely something that will give a boost to the Spanish economy but they also provide us with a huge opportunity,” Cardenal said.

“We have experience of the Barcelona Olympic Games and in economic terms its resolve was indisputable.

“Four-fifths of our necessary investment for our bid has already been achieved, so we are not talking about huge scale of new investment.”

Cardenal added: “The Spanish state is calling for its citizens to tighten their belts and accept the need for a degree of sacrifice and the measures are certainly painful.

“But we are pursuing this project because there are economic studies that identify the investment already made, the investment still to be made and the yield on those investment in terms of employment will boost the economy.

“The bid wishes to be smart and reasonable looking at sustainability and we shall only have expenditure that’s absolutely necessary and will make financial dividends.

“Let’s not forget the Games we are bidding for is in 2020. Eight years is a very long time in terms of economic developments and we certainly hope the economic situation is Spain in eight years time will be a lot better than now.

“There will be no additional investment between now and the final decision of the bid in September 2013 apart from those that are supported by the private sector rather than the public.”

President of the Spanish Olympic Committee Alejandro Blanco, who is also serving as the president of the 2020 bidding committee, added: “Madrid is different because the bulk of the investment has already been made.

“The investment that is called for if we are successful is less than the return we will get on the Games.

“All of the investment made by Spain will be affected if we don’t get the Games, but the amount we would need for further infrastructure is quite minor in relation to the investment already made. We have private sector funding ready to be made if we are successful.”