Cost of the Olympic Games

The Olympic Games are considered to be the world's foremost international sporting event with over 200 nations participating.[1] It historically had the highest costs and expenses for the hosts, with the estimated cost of the 2016 Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro being at approximately US$11.1 billion.[2]

Sports-related costs for the Summer Games since 1960 is on average $5.2 billion (USD) and for the Winter Games $393.1 million dollars. The highest recorded total cost was the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, costing approximately US$55 billion. The 2016 Rio de Janeiro Summer Games experienced the biggest loss recorded at approximately $2 billion (USD).[3]

Costs edit

The current highest cost of hosting the Olympic Games was the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Summer Games, costing approximately US$11.1 billion. In order to meet the requirements set out by the International Olympic Committee (IOC)[4] The Rio de Janeiro council had to invest heavily in building the necessary facilities/venues, and an entirely new subway line. The lack of a solid infrastructure to support these investments led to the council underestimating their costs by 25%.[5]

The costs of hosting the Olympic Games can be classified into 2 categories; infrastructure and operational costs.

Infrastructure edit

General infrastructure edit

The costs of general infrastructure consist of preparing the necessary infrastructure to accommodate the influx of tourists and athletes in the host city. The International Olympic Committee requires a minimum of 40,000 hotel rooms available for visiting spectators and an Olympic Village that is able to house 15,000 athletes, referees, and officials.

Internal and external transportation facilities that can transport spectators into and out of the host city and from venue to venue are also required by the Committee. These requirements are often met through renovations to already-built facilities or construction of entirely new facilities. These facilities include train/subway lines, roads, and airports.

Sports infrastructure edit

The host city is also required by the Olympic Committee to invest in sport-specific infrastructure that meets their requirements. Facilities must have specified minimum sizes and reach the specific seating and safety protocols which often require refurbishments or new construction, particularly less-used facilities such as natatoriums, velodromes and sliding tracks.

Host city selection edit

The winter games needs high mountains, especially for the alpine events. Traditionally there were requirements of fairly short distance between the host city and the alpine slopes, which often has made smaller cities to be chosen as winter host cities, such as Lake Placid, Lillehammer and Sochi. These smaller cities have mostly lacked the arenas and accommodation needed, and had less need for them afterwards. After the 2012 when no democratic country bid for the winter games due to the high cost, a larger distance was accepted, allowing existing slopes to be used together with a large host city with more existing infrastructure, for example Milan at a distance of 410 km by road to Cortina.

Operating costs edit

Once the necessary infrastructure is put in place, the Olympics require a large amount of spending on operating costs throughout the duration of the Games. Historically, the most significant operating costs for the hosts have been in event management, organization and preparation of the opening and closing ceremonies, and increasingly in recent years, security.

Table edit

The table below lists the costs of hosting the Olympic Games. Due to the multitude of reporting methods, the table contains both the operating costs and total final costs (which include various infrastructure upgrades and security costs), as well as both known and not estimated figures. Net loss or gain are measured against the operating budgets. Intangible costs (such as to the environment and society) and benefits (through tourism) are not included here.

Olympiad Host Final Operating
Total Costs Taxpayer Contribution Profit/Loss Year Debt Paid Off Notes
1896 Summer Olympics   Athens 3,740,000 [6] Donations by George Averoff of 1,000,000 ₯ covered potential losses
1900 Summer Olympics   Paris
1904 Summer Olympics   St. Louis
1908 Summer Olympics   London US$394,000 est.[6]   £6,377
1912 Summer Olympics   Stockholm
1920 Summer Olympics   Antwerp
1924 Winter Olympics   Chamonix 3,500,000₣ 2,000,000₣
1924 Summer Olympics   Paris   5,496,610₣[6]
1928 Winter Olympics   St. Moritz CHF706,000   CHF104,800
1928 Summer Olympics   Amsterdam $1,183,000[6]   $18,000
1932 Winter Olympics   Lake Placid
1932 Summer Olympics   Los Angeles   $1,000,000[6]
1936 Winter Olympics   Garmisch-Partenkirchen
1936 Summer Olympics   Berlin $30,000,000[6]
1948 Winter Olympics   St. Moritz
1948 Summer Olympics   London £761,688[7]   £29,000[6]
1952 Winter Olympics   Oslo
1952 Summer Olympics   Helsinki 1,580,000,000 mk[6]   49,000,000 mk
1956 Winter Olympics   Cortina d'Ampezzo lira 460 million
1956 Summer Olympics   Melbourne A£5,400,000[7]  A£300,000[6]
1960 Winter Olympics   Squaw Valley US$80 million[8]
1960 Summer Olympics   Rome
1964 Winter Olympics   Innsbruck
1964 Summer Olympics   Tokyo US$72,000,000[7] US$1,926,000,000[6]
1968 Winter Olympics   Grenoble
1968 Summer Olympics   Mexico City US$176,000,000[7]
1972 Winter Olympics   Sapporo
1972 Summer Olympics   Munich 1,972,000,000 DM[6]
1976 Winter Olympics   Innsbruck
1976 Summer Olympics   Montreal CDN$207,000,000[9] CDN$1,410,000,000[9]   CDN$990,000[9] 2006 A special tobacco tax was introduced in May 1976 to fund the loss
1980 Winter Olympics   Lake Placid US$49,000,000[10] US$169,000,000[10]
1980 Summer Olympics   Moscow US$231,000,000[11] US$1,350,000,000[11]
  US$1,190,000 deficit[citation needed] This was the year that The United States and 64 other Nations boycotted due to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.
1984 Winter Olympics   Sarajevo US$55,400,000[12] US$110,900,000[12]   US$10,000,000 [12] The first Olympics since 1948 to make a profit
1984 Summer Olympics   Los Angeles US$320,000,000[13] US$413,000,000[13] $75,000,000[14][15]   US$250,000,000[16] 1984 The first Summer Olympics since 1932 to make a profit[15]
1988 Winter Olympics   Calgary CDN$438,000,000[17] CDN$899,000,000[17] CDN$425,000,000[17]  CDN$32,000,000[17] 1988
1988 Summer Olympics   Seoul US$4,000,000,000[citation needed]   US$300,000,000[16] 1988 A record profit for a government-run Olympiad[citation needed]
1992 Summer Olympics   Barcelona US$850,000,000[citation needed] US$9,300,000,000[18]   US$10,000,000[16] 1992 Operating costs were put at 9.1% of the total cost. The vast majority of spending was to improve infrastructure.[19]
1992 Winter Olympics   Albertville US$1,200,000,000 on infrastructure[20]   US$67,000,000[20]
1994 Winter Olympics   Lillehammer US$1,100,000,000[21][22] US$250,000,000[21][22]
1996 Summer Olympics   Atlanta US$1,800,000,000[citation needed] US$609,000,000[14]   US$19,000,000[citation needed] 1996 Following the model of LA 1984, Atlanta achieved a healthy profit
1998 Winter Olympics   Nagano ~US$10,000,000,000 in new infrastructure[23]   Net loss[citation needed] Estimated 2015[23] The full cost of the Nagano Olympics is unknown, due to Nagano Olympic Bid Committee vice-secretary general Sumikazu Yamaguchi ordering accounting documents burned[23]
2000 Summer Olympics   Sydney A$6,600,000,000 [24][25] A$3,000,000,000 (A$3,635,000,000 borne by the public)[citation needed] A$2,050,000,000[26]   US$2.1 billion [27] 2000
2002 Winter Olympics   Salt Lake City US$2,000,000,000 [28] US$1,200,000,000 [29] US$600,000,000[30]   US$101,000,000[31] 2002 Additional security costs were incurred in the wake of the September 11 attacks
2004 Summer Olympics   Athens US$15,000,000,000[32] US$9,000,000,000[33] US$6,200,000,000[34]   US$14,500,000[35] The cost of the 2004 Athens Summer Games has been cited as a contributor to the Greek government-debt crisis. Many of the venues lie vacant and rotting; the Independent newspaper reports as many as 21 out of 22 are unused.[36]
2006 Winter Olympics   Turin US$700,000,000[37]   US$3,200,000[38] The Italian government created a lottery game to cover its financial losses.[citation needed]
2008 Summer Olympics   Beijing US$44,000,000,000[39]   CNY 1,000,000,000 (US$146,000,000)[40] 2008
2010 Winter Olympics   Vancouver CDN$ 1,700,000,000 (US$1,260,000,000)[41] US$ 6,400,000,000[42] US$ 2,300,000,000[43]  CDN$ 1,900,000[44]
2014 [45] Included in the total US$6,400,000,000 cost are the $1,000,000,000 for security, $2,500,000,000 for transportation extensions and upgrades, and $900,000,000 for the new Vancouver Convention Centre (An additional $554,000,000 was spent by the city including a portion on the Olympic Village).[42][46][47]
2012 Summer Olympics   London US$10,400,000,000[48] US$14,600,000,000[49] US$4,400,000,000[50] GBP £nil[51] 2012 Additional costs include $90 million for converting the Olympic Stadium (London) to a football venue[52]
2014 Winter Olympics   Sochi US$51,000,000,000[53]   US$53,150,000[54] The most expensive Olympic Games in history, surpassing the previous record set by the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympic Games.[55]
2016 Summer Olympics   Rio de Janeiro US$13,100,000,000 [56][57] US$11.6 billion [58][59]   US$2.0 billion [60]
2018 Winter Olympics   Pyeongchang US$2,190,000,000[61] US$12,900,000,000[62]   US$55,000,000[63]
2020 Summer Olympics   Tokyo US$15,400,000,000 [64] US$28,000,000,000 [65]
2022 Winter Olympics   Beijing US$3.9 billion[66]   US$52,000,000[67]
2024 Summer Olympics   Paris
2026 Winter Olympics   Milan and Cortina d'Ampezzo US$1.6 billion[68]
2028 Summer Olympics   Los Angeles
2032 Summer Olympics   Brisbane

See also edit

References edit

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External links edit