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Madrid 2020

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We're getting close to the race proper now, as the cities try to outdo each other in a series of outlandish stunts. First blood to Madrid for this effort:

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Spain's economy is a wreck and sent the global market tumbling today. There are those who believe Spain will leave the Euro even before Greece. All this will not be cleaned up in a little over a year. Although I like the idea of Madrid (and would probably most want to attend the 2020 Games if they were there), I can't see them winning under these conditions. A Madrid win would communicate the ultimate message of fiscal irresponsibility from the IOC. Very sad for Espana.

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If Spain leave of Euro, is The End of the Euro. Spain has economic problems like everyone else.

The Olympic Games are in 2020 now is 2012, and Madrid has 75% of the Olympic venues completed.

It is more concerned about the lack of human rights in Turkey that the economy of Spain.

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Venues, hotels, concept. The Games are seen as an opportunity. 78% of the sports facilities and civilians are ready. Good transport network. Two previous experiences, the Olympic spirit and government support.

DOHA OUT

BAKU OUT

TOKIO 8.02

INSTAMBUL 6.98

MADRID 8.08

in this moment, a favorite bid for IOC is MADRID.

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Sorry, Mariote. I'm a fan of Madrid, but it will not happen. Spain's economic problems are far worse than most. Under these conditions they cannot win. This is not a minor setback. This is huge.

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Spain has economic problems like everyone else.

Indeed, but the size of Spain's problems eclipse those of Ireland, Iceland and Greece. The government is struggling to borrow money at prices it can afford, has shockingly low foreign exchange reserves for the size of its banking sector and the Deputy Prime Minister has to go begging to the IMF because Merkel isn't listening.

But, if we look at Iceland and Ireland, we see that bail-outs can work, and runs on banks do eventually end. The markets hate indecision, and unfortunately the Spanish are locked into the eurozone where no one has really made any decisions for months.

If we can still hope, rather than despair for Spain, Madrid could be an 'austerity' games and do things well with the bid you have (which is strong). It will all be in the timing - if Spain's liquidity problems rumble on, or worsen, then I'm not sure the IOC will want to take the risk of a national government unable to cope with cost over-runs. If things become stable then Madrid could become a model for a lean but effective games.

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The big question with Madrid's candidacy vs. the other two from a strictly fiscal POV, is will a Games help cure Spain's problem, or will it exacerbate it? If it will be the latter, then of course, the IOC would want to steer clear of Spanish shores. And I think the IOC (or I would want to think so) is frightfully aware what a big financial burden their party is -- so that Damocles' sword hangs heavy over Madrid.

I predict Madrid may garner no more than 25 votes in the first balloting.

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The big question with Madrid's candidacy vs. the other two from a strictly fiscal POV, is will a Games help cure Spain's problem, or will it exacerbate it?

I disagree. Although the Games are expensive, they pale dramatically in comparison to the overall national debt. The Olympics aren't going to have a significant economic impact either positively or negatively.

This race is all about perception -- not reality. The perception will be that the world's most lavish spectacle decided to go to one of the world's most financially strapped countries. It looks incredibly irresponsible. It looks as though the Spaniards are damning their economic future for the sake of the Games, whether or not that's what's actually happening.

Plus, when was the last time the IOC got excited about "austerity Games"? Forget "faster, higher, stronger." They're all about "bigger, grander, splashier." They've proved it with every recent vote.

Most importantly, Spain isn't up against weak challengers. This would be a tough race for them under the best circumstances. As it is now, they're like a double amputee going up against able-bodied athletes. Impossible to win? No. But highly, highly unlikely.

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So obviously, the economic picture is a major Damocles's word over the Spanish candidacy. You can't deny that. The IOC would appear to be an extremely irresponsible party in giving a big spendthrift extravaganza to a society barely able to keep its house in order. Negligible or not in the total dollars-and-cents column, it would still be a gargantuan expense...partly as a matter of perception; and partly as reality. Up against the world's 3rd largest economy plus another one booming and maybe resolving some tricky political landmines in the process, it does seem Madrid picked a bad time to go for #3.

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I don't even really see it so much as Spain's technical ability to host, or the likelihood its economy will stabilise in the next year before the vote. It's still all in the perceptions.

We've just had months and months of the ongoing Greek saga, where the images of the run down Olympic complex and the 2004 games being used in the media constantly as an example of Greek profligacy. It's been an simplistic - and easily illustrated - example that has been used over and over again in the media of the world. Now the games may not have been a huge contributor to the Greek debt, but in a lot of minds they've become linked because of all the coverage.

I just don't see how in the current climate the IOC would want to risk it again being dragged into discussions of overblown expenditures, financial splurging and economic irresponsibility. It's just exactly the wrong message the IOC would want to convey in these days. I really think Madrid's dead in the water for this - and if anything BaronsShrek's estimate of 25 votes may even be a tad optimistic.

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Madrid 2020 the Annecy 2018?

What about all those "never underestimate the Spaniards" arguments? Out the window now. Perhaps it'll weight in considerably, but add their dire economic situation to the already Barcelona 1992 effect & JAS no longer in the picture on their behalf, & I can't C 1/3rd of the IOC voting for them for a 3rd consecutive time.

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Madrid 2020 the Annecy 2018?

What about all those "never underestimate the Spaniards" arguments? Out the window now. Perhaps it'll weight in considerably, but add their dire economic situation to the already Barcelona 1992 effect & JAS no longer in the picture on their behalf, & I can't C 1/3rd of the IOC voting for them for a 3rd consecutive time.

Yeah, well, I do keep trying to remind myself not to underestimate them -but it's just so hard to see them overcoming the handicaps they're starting with. That said, I do think ALL the remaining bids have started of the candidate stage very shakily. Istanbul seems to have just mailed in their name to Lausanne but little else, Ishihara seems to be doing his best to tick off all Tokyoites by telling them all they're all selfish and self-aborbed and Spain's problems are sending markets down around the globe.

One question - if Madrid, as we are constantly being reminded - has most of the facilities in place to easily host without much extra big-ticket expenditure, what's exactly left to do for them that will create so many jobs and stimulate their economy?

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Totally agree with those recent posts, Rols.

If anybody can dig themselves out of this, it's the Spaniards. Clearly they know how to work the IOC. But that economy -- yikes.

Perception, perception, perception. And perception is against Madrid no matter what the working group report may say.

Neither Istanbul nor Tokyo are razzle-dazzling anybody either. It's an iffy beginning that has to make one wonder where the Olympic Movement is headed. I'm not at all convinced we'll see a dramatic turnaround for 2024.

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Although the Games are expensive, they pale dramatically in comparison to the overall national debt.

Your point about perception rather than reality is never more true. Spain has a lower national debt than the UK, the US, Germany and Japan (which has the world's largest). No-one is talking about Tokyo not having the money. Economics is tricky and subtle, rather like an IOC vote.

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One question - if Madrid, as we are constantly being reminded - has most of the facilities in place to easily host without much extra big-ticket expenditure, what's exactly left to do for them that will create so many jobs and stimulate their economy?

As a supporter of Madrid., this question really a good one, but how about the tourist ?? they'll come for the games right ?? :)

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As a supporter of Madrid., this question really a good one, but how about the tourist ?? they'll come for the games right ?? :)

Although there is a huge influx of tourists for the Games themselves, generally there is a dead period before and after so that it works out to be a wash. If there is an increase in tourism, it happens over time as the host city's new image catches on. This happened especially with Barcelona.

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I have had to think about this bid, the pros and cons etc...

But, as time has progressed, and the likelihood of a bailout from the EU/IMF has risen, I think the IOC should strike Madrid off the ballot. A country which is in such economic meltdown, with an unemployment rate of 25% and still rising, banking crisis still developing, I do not see how it can realistically mount a credible bid.

The Spanish Govt will have to underwrite the bid financially, and any shortfalls.... how is that possible given their current circumstances??

This bid, is not credible or financially sound.

Edited by Michelle
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I think the IOC should strike Madrid off the ballot. A country which is in such economic meltdown, with an unemployment rate of 25% and still rising, banking crisis still developing, I do not see how it can realistically mount a credible bid.

That's precisely one of the main reasons why Madrid is bidding, to create new jobs and to improve the economy with the Olympics. Thanks to the previous attempts, the 2020 bid will be much cheaper, and the idea is not to spend a single euro of public money until the Games are awarded. In spite of the current economic situation, I think Madrid is still a reliable host. If the IOC didn't trust Madrid, it wouldn't have been shortlisted a week ago.

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Off course, the games in Madrid will be a great boost to Spain's economy, new jobs will also be generated by the games too, and they have almost everything built so it won't be such a problem for them... ;) They have the same possibilities than Istanbul or Tokyo, at this moment Madrid's worst enemy is that is too soon for Spain...

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The IOC are confident enough in Spain to shortlist them. This is because their bid is one of the most ready there's ever been. Yes the government would have to underwrite any losses, but Spain is still a rich country, and Olympic overruns would pale in comparison to normal levels of national debt. I've no doubt Spain could and would manage to get the remaining venues and infrastrcture ready and built even with their economy as it is.

The point about perception though is a good one. It mightn't look good to award Madrid the Games at the current time, even though the risk may be smaller than many people imagine it to be.

BUT HAVING SAID THAT

As I've said before, Spain's bid is a weird one. It's argubly the only Olympic bid I remember where nobody seems to have any worries over venues or infrastrcture.The question I want to ask though, is Spain capable of raising the sponsorship needed? Madrid supporters are keen (and right) to point out their country isn't Greece. Spain's problems come from a dead private sector and over-burdened small banks, rather than a massively over inflated public sector. Would Spanish companies stump up the £700m the OCOG would be looking for in domestic sponsorship? London managed to get 80% of their sponsorship in place pre-recession. This was arguably the biggest masterstroke LOCOG pulled off as even they admit they mighn't have been able to hit target had they left things a year or so later. Given this context, it's perhaps the OCOG side of things that provides the biggest worry for the IOC with regard to a Madrid Games. What a weird situation to be in?

Edited by RobH
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Your point about sponsorship is very astute. I hadnt thought about that one. Even if the Soaniards do have sone sort of answer to tgat issue I still dont think the bid can win.

The perception is what kills it. Picking Madrid would create a PR nightmare for the IOC and a PR albatross for Madrid throughout their years of preparation. What could be so compelling about Madrid that would induce the IOC to bypass two other very respectable bids and take on that headache? I just don't see it happening.

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If the overall cost of an Olympic Games is "...negligible in the overall fiscal picture, but will create jobs and heal the economy..."? :blink:

Wait a minute. What kind of BS is this? It's talking out of two sides of the mouth. It's either it's injurious in the one end-through and through; or it is munificent on the other extreme. There might be a slight pick-up in the numbers early on but as already seen by Greece's example, the so-called 'necessary' expenditures can spiral and cause inexorable, larger damage. And of course, the spin doctors will spin it that way. At least Italy was prudent and self-disciplined enough to recognize this before going any farther. Whereas the Madrilenos are a stubborn, delusional lot--riding on this pipe dream that an Olympic Games will fix their overall malaise. Methinks that Castilian sun doth burn too much.

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Raising question about Madrid's financial capability at staging the Games makes perfect sense and this will probably be the main task of the Evaluation Commission. I have no doubt that comes 2013, should there be a significant risk with respect to Madrid 2020, there will be still time to stop the bid.

Comparing Rome's situation with Madrid is a proof of ignorance/misunderstanding or (more likely given Baron's spectacular record in the field) bad faith: Madrid has very limited investments to make compared to Rome where heavy investments were planned (in particular for transport).

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