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South Africa faces mounting World Cup-related economic woes

07-12-2010 11:52 BJT Special Report:World Cup 2010 |

BEIJING, July 12 (Xinhuanet) -- It's easy to find open bars in South Africa, but how many of those sitting in the bars are thinking of economic problems?

FIFA has already begun to prepare for the successful end of the event before the finals. FIFA made huge gains of over 3 billion U.S. dollars from this year's World Cup, through the sale of broadcast rights and corporate sponsorship in particular, making it the most profitable World Cup in FIFA history.

Despite the handsome economic data, the other side of the event is not satisfying. As the host country, South Africa has invested a total of 4.3 billion U.S. dollars, which equals 1.7 percent of the country's GDP, the highest in World Cup history. As a matter of fact, the actual cost is 10 times more than the budget South Africa made six years ago. For South Africa, the World Cup and its huge cost is sparking wide debate. If FIFA and some corporations have made money, what about the host country?

Public opinion is positive regarding the economic situation in South Africa after the World Cup, but even if FIFA paints a rosy picture of the country's economic future, the real situation is rather disappointing. There is still high unemployment and a sluggish economy. Local media in South Africa described FIFA's behavior as "a new period of football colonial rule and fraud," and the slogan "Blatter was the Mafia" also appeared in the World Cup in the strike parade.

The South Africa presented the world with a splendid football event, particularly the stadiums. The Green Point Stadium near Cape Town, which can host 60,000 viewers, cost some 580 million U.S. dollars. But it was not necessary to furnish funds for building the stadium. The new arena in Durban, which can host 70,000 spectators, cost 380 million U.S. dollars. All these luxury stadiums, dubbed as "foreigners' handbags," look nice.

Editor:Jin Lin |Source: Xinhua

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