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Johan Knols
Blogger, safari specialist, professional wildlife guide (Woerden, Netherlands)

Johan Knols is the owner of the planyoursafari blog. He studied tourism in the Netherlands and has been working in the African tourism industry for nearly 15 years. Starting as lodge manager in the Serengeti in Tanzania, he eventually owned his own mobile safari company in Botswana. Johan received his professional wildlife- guides licence in 1998 and was awarded the title of Honorary Wildlife Officer with the Botswana Wildlife and National Parks authority in 2005. During his time in Africa he has managed upmarket safari lodges and has done overland trips in the luxury and semi-luxury sector. At the moment he is a full-time blogger giving tips and advices on everything related to African safaris.

Post

World Cup Soccer 2010: A Kick In The Nuts Of The Poor (3rd update)

Published 19th April 2010 - 36 comments - 20459 views -

An event that could easily bankrupt a state

The Rainbow Nation (South Africa) is ready for the second biggest sporting event on the planet: the Fifa’s World Cup Soccer (WCS). 52 Days left and counting down.

It all started on May 15th 2004, when not only South Africa, but basically the whole of Africa got awarded the WCS 2010. Cheers were heard from every corner of the world’s poorest continent, the same continent that would show the rest of the planet what it would be capable of doing and would prove to have grown up. As if a few millionaires kicking a soccer ball around could drag Africa out of its poverty, dictatorships and wars. Was it a political move to award the games to South Africa?

The costs

As with all big projects in the world, whether people want them or not, the costs of the WCS have gotten out of hand and not just a bit. Already in 2009 the teller got stuck on the equivalent of more than $ 4 billion, when the original calculations said the whole event would cost a bit less than half of this amount. Now inflation and recession get the blame.

Stupid of course. Any project has an inflation percentage build in and even without the recession the expected international visitor number of 1 million in 2002 was high, even 500 thousand appears to be too high in April 2010. In order for the stadiums not to look empty, today the sale of half a million tickets has started on the local South African market.

Could it be that the original costs were kept low on purpose as not to create too much opposition to the plans? Once the WCS was awarded it would be difficult to withdraw the nomination. For one month the eyes of the world will be focused on South Africa and who cares that it costs a bit.

The poor

I know a lot of people that care.

How about these homeless people that will be spoiling the fun for soccer fans.

How about the statistics (page 140) that 43,2% of South Africans are living on less than R 3.000($ 403,00) a year (2006)?

How about the 5,7 million people living with HIV?

What do they gain after the games? An improved highway system that they can’t use because they don’t own a vehicle. New stadiums that they won’t be able to visit due to entrance fees. Improved IT services that they, without a computer, don’t need. And not to forget enlarged airports that they have never seen, let alone used.

The rich

Of course there are the ones that don’t care what the costs will be. First of all there is FIFA itself, that slashes everybody that advertises the WCS but isn’t an official sponsor. Apparently trade marks rule.

Then there is Match Hospitality, a company that was given the rights by FIFA to buy and sell thousands of hotel rooms in South Africa, up the price, and is now dumping the rooms in the street since they are not able to sell them. A bit sore that one of the shareholders of Match is FIFA’s Sepp Blatter nephew . Ouch! It seems that the Africans have little to say in this global soccer game.

Although it is known that mega sporting events hardly bring in the so much needed cash and the FIFA is calculating in a loss, the WCS was awarded to South Africa. And although I am under the impression that Africa should be as much part of the sporting community as any other continent in the world, one can ask the question if the 4 billion American dollar could not have been spend in a much better way. A way that would benefit the poor and the desperate.

( 1 st update 20 April 2010): Some figures

- FIFA has increased its price money from $261 to $420 million (2006 compared to 2010). Page 48.
- The winning team (of most likely millionairs already) will receive $30 million.
- Every player will receive $ 1600 per day for the duration of the tournament. That is roughly four year salaries for the majority of the SA population per day!
- FIFA set up a ticketing fund, supported by their offfical partners, and gives away 120.000 tickets to the youth and 54.000 to the construction workers so they can all see 'a match'.
A construction worker that worked 300 days, will receive one free ticket of $ 20, which is a 'thank you' of $ 0,066 a day. Page 50.

Events of this magnitude should not be held in relatively poor countries that are a ten hours flight away. Let ‘the north’ host these games and carry the financial burden. As for the South Africans, they can watch the games on their televisions, just the same as they unfortunately have to do now anyway.

The video below gives a nice insight in the problems that South Africa and the WCS are dealing with. Interesting detail: some 40 thousand extra policemen will be on duty during the games. If they would stay employed after the games the desperately needed decrease in crime might eventually become a reality. I doubt whether this will happen if the foreign fans have headed home.

 

( 2nd update 27/05/2010)

The start of the tournament is nearing. Seeing the number of comments on this post I decided to add a poll so you can cast your votes! As soon as I know who became the winner I will inform you. You can share the poll with your friends as well.

 

( 3rd update 2 june 2010):

As the world cup is approaching and, without a doubt, the South Africans are eager to recieve the first soccer teams and fans, also criticism about the national benefits keeps trickling in. The FIFA is by more and more people being seen as a financial demon that dictates the standards. The South Africans thought these games were theirs. Now slowly everybody is starting to wake up and from the original 4% increase of GDP for 2010, only 0,4% remains at best.

 

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Comments

  • Ahmed ElAmin on 19th April 2010:

    Yes, I agree in essence that money must be focused on poverty alleviation and economic development. And yes, many NGOs in and outside South Africa are protesting about the cost and diversion of resources. Yes, big events usually have big cost overruns.
    But, while you report the cost overruns, one should also look at the economic benefits as estimated by Grant Thornton (if anyone has a copy of the original report please link). It is the economic benefits that hold out the promise of future gain, especially in encouraging foreign investment, as some SA economists have said.
    I only have reports on the estimates, but according to South African media reports, Grant Thornton estimated in 2006 that the event would contribute at least R51.1-billion (€5 billion at current prices) to the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) and add 159,000 new jobs, including full- and part- time jobs. That’s a direct benefit.
    Yes, that might be way off, given the economic downturn and the cut in personal spending. Grant Thornton has now revised the estimates of visitors down to about 400,000 from the original 480,000. But you know, it just might work out, as it did for Germany in 2006 (the country made a profit).
    South Africa has managed some big events in the past - including the 1995 Rugby World Cup, the 2003 Cricket World Cup, the Women’s World Cup of Golf in 2005 and 2006 and, in January 2006, the only street race in the inaugural A1 GP World Cup of Motorsport. Of course, we must report both the good and bad. I for one welcomed the move to hand the World Cup to SA. It is in their hands now, for a mixture of good and bad. So who says developing countries can’t have fun?


  • Iris Cecilia Gonzales on 19th April 2010:

    Johan,

    Interesting post. I’ve actually read in the past that many Africans have opposed this because of reasons you mentioned. I think you’re right in saying that the original costs were probably kept low so as not to agitated the people.


  • Johan Knols on 19th April 2010:

    Hi Ahmed,

    The last thing I want to do is deny developing countries fun. But to what costs? The world cup soccer in Germany was successful because of all the people that simply got in their car and drove there and back home. And that several times. The costs of organizing the cup in SA are simply too high for many, hence the ‘panic’ about not knowing how to fill the seats. The reason why SA made money out of cricket was because cricket is a sport for the middle and upper-class in SA. Soccer is not.


  • Ahmed ElAmin on 19th April 2010:

    Hi Jonan
    So are you saying that they will not make money despite the rising costs? As I said, I agree with you on the points but was commenting on the lack of balance. The costs may be high, but the return (both monetary and in intangibles) might be worth it. I don’t think any of us has the ability right now to make that prediction, as we are reporting from a distance. For the positives, we can only go with what experts are estimating. That’s all we have along with the reports on the ground. With all the negatives coming out (and now is the time), we can’t just then say the sky is going to fall, like doomsayers of old. Right now it is too early to tell. My quibble is for balanced reporting rather than a list of negatives. South Africa was a good choice, and I look forward to toyi-toying during the matches.


  • Tiziana Cauli on 19th April 2010:

    I Johan,
    I agree on the the fact that a lot of public money used to build huge stadiums - sometimes even destroying the smaller ones which were there beforehand, mainly used for rugby matches - which will only be used at their full capacity during the World Cup, would have been better spent on, say, education. Sports facilities for kids living in the townships would also be a good investment, requiring much less funding and able to produce a positive social impact.

    But I do think hosting the Soccer World Cup will be good for the country as a whole, in terms of image at least, which may extend the foreign capital flows long beyond June 2010. I do believe this is a great opportunity for South Africa, but it may easily turn into a huge waste of funds and public money if the government does not use it well. Which seems very possible to me, given the bad records on corruption of some very high level politicians, including president Zuma. I hope this won’t be the case though.


  • Johan Knols on 19th April 2010:

    Hi Tiziana,

    Of course do I hope that the WCS will be a success for South Africa. But that SA faces a bigger risk than the rich FIFA is clear from this article: http://www.google.com/hostednews/canadianpress/article/ALeqM5gbBYbZ-_ilfXUiQEpb9Qsgs7k6Gg


  • silke on 20th April 2010:

    Hi Johan,

    very interesting article.
    Let me say something : everywhere in the world where extremly high investments are done or where lobbys want to make them rule (for several raisons) the problem is the same. There is often, very often a huge lack between the costs and the results at long term. The more problems the country has the worse the difference is, and the more the lobbys try to manage to pull down the costs in the first budgets to get the project on road.

    We have the same problem on the island. Without wanting to talk about another project but just an exemple. They want to build a kind of museum. Initial costs 60 Mio Euros… The time passed by, a lot of costs has already been engaged and right now, before there is even one stone built the costs are estimed at all ready 110 MIo euros and I guess its still not enough. But in the meantime 10 Mio euros has been payed for employees which are not working, develpment costs, marketing etc…

    The problem in south africa is, as often, that most of the africans cannot even have a little profit of all of that, but on the other hand due to the workcup there are some new jobs and maybe a little bit of hope for a further developpement.  I am not sure what I should think about it and I guess the final answer can only be given maybe 2 years after the world cup. will they be able to pull down violence, will they be able to give a new and better knows idea of the african countrys ?? Time will show.

    I know a lot of people that do know exactly nothing about africa, these people still have the idea that everywhere in africa there is only bushes and people are running around naked. But thats not south africa. Maybe a message can been transported into the world, maybe new people will get curious of what south africa really is.. ??

    You know after all, right now its too late to change the decision and all what we can do is hoping that in the end the world cup will bring the best benefit to south africa and Sas image…


  • Johan Knols on 20th April 2010:

    Hi Silke,

    Obviously I agree with your comments. More importantly, SA has a very active Tourism Board and many campaigns are rolled out world wide and are harvesting results. SA is already on the map (whether positive or negative) and we just have to hope that in June/Juli the international media will focus on the positives rather than the negatives. Because that could have more dire consequences than the financial ones.


  • Anthea on 20th April 2010:

    Hi Johan

    Well said!! Being based in SA and in the tourism industry, which is so said to be ‘booming’ it is embarrassing to be a South African right now!  The greed shown by a majority of suppliers (accommodation/transport) is shocking!  When clients were looking to book in January, MATCH were holding rooms - now that potential clients have decided against visiting the World Cup, MATCH releases the rooms it was holding and accommodations are not full.  Fortunately the knee jerk of this is that some suppliers have ‘seen the light’ and have brought down their exorbitant rates.  Now we just need the clients…

    The short sightedness of a majority of suppliers who waiver all previous agreements with tour operators for the 1.5 month period to make maximum monetary gain - forgetting that its us tour ops that support them the rest of the year.  I agree that this is a high season so to speak and charging the normal high season rate is understandable - but doubling & tripling prices is just plain greedy!  And dont get me started on commissions - or lack there of during the WC….

    If only role players can look at the long term benefits of this event and see that SA had a great opportunity to show case what it has to offer as a destination - sadly though, in my opinion, SA has only created more of a reputation for being over-priced and has possibly turned away potential visitors - but that is only my humble opinion. 

    As you say, in Germany most spectators climbed in their car or caught a train to see any of the games.  Logistics of seeing a game this year means a minimum of a 12 hour flight, accommodation & transport to be arranged (SA does not have Europes public transport infrastructure) and then the thinking most people have is that they have come so far, why not take a few days to see the country. 

    In theory this is great for SA tourism - in reality most people cannot afford to do that with the hiked prices - particularly where most of the world is coming out of a recession (or are we…).  And SA is developing the reputation of being expensive! 

    Having been in this industry for a while I wish that I could be more positive, however from my perspective it is ‘industry gone mad’ for 1.5 months of the year.  Such a shame..


  • Jack on 20th April 2010:

    Having just returned from a trip to SA I have to say that I think after listening to the average African in the streets that initially they thought that they would gain financially but now they are all convinced that only the big boys are going to cream anything off the top. The naked greed of a large number of companies, organisations and individuals is quite staggering, obscene in fact. Lets not beat around the bush this is so typical of the African mentality expecting to be able to charge the “stupid” First World whatever it feels like and get away with it. No doubt they will start playing the guilt card and bring up colonialisation as the root cause of all their woes, including any cock ups with the WCS. Africa as a whole needs to get off its arse, stop begging for handouts, stop selling off its assets for the benefit of its elite and stop lying through its teeth about just about everything.
    Having said that the buzz down in Cape Town surrounding the WCS was fantastic. Everyone I spoke to was bubling over with enthusisam for the event even if they thought they were not going to benefit directly. And with that thought in mind, If nothing tragic happens during the competition then I think the indirect benefits later this year and the next will be as far as tourism is concerned will be worth it. The fact that for around six weeks the World’s media will not only be reporting on the soccer but all aspects of not only South Africa but Africa as a whole and that it will be cemented into the conciousness of millions of people means that next year we may reap the benefits of increased tourism.
    Not only that I profoundly hope that all the Africans who got cheap tickets because of lack of sales have a great time at the matches.


  • silke on 20th April 2010:

    well .. to be honest .. in every nation where the world cup has been done the population in commun has not earned any profit from the events.. not as I do know.. maybe some bars that did animations, maybe some people selling hot dogs in the streets but except that there are only the big fishes that do really have benef of football events or world fairs..
    so why should that be different in africa. sure money could have been used in another way, for more serious problems like HIV, hunger etc.. but there is still a little bit of hope in my mind that finally the benefit will not be in money or profit but more in kind of a unique nation !!
    hope is dying last !


  • Johan Knols on 21st April 2010:

    @ Anthea
    Thanks for your comment Anthea. What is most surprising to me is the fact that the FIFA awarded the non African company MATCH the contract to deal with WCS-accommodations. No wonder that every South African accommodation owner thought this to be the goose laying the golden eggs and jumped on the band wagon. Now they are being left behind disillusioned and I am sure they wished they would just have treated the WCS opportunity as an extra ‘high season’.
    I am wondering how the poor part of your country feels if the ‘well-of’ guys are already disappointed…..

    @Jack
    Greed…. We all know where that leads to.

    @Silke
    The only reason why Germany made money during the World Cup in 2006 is because it did not have to invest $ 4 billion to host the games. I just hope that South Africa will not regret organizing this years cup in a few months to come.


  • Anthea on 21st April 2010:

    Morning Johan

    Yes I do agree with you.  And it is shocking how they are treating the poor people too - another case of the ‘poor get poorer’....  In my opinion there has been an over all short sightedness towards this whole event.


  • Johan Knols on 24th April 2010:

    Yesterday I watched the livestream from GIJC (Global Investigative Journalism Conference) in Geneva ( http://gijc2010.ch/ )and one of the speakers was Declan Hill, a journalist having done investigations into (soccer) sports rigging. That this years world cup is under threat as well can be read in the article: http://goal.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/11/27/q-a-on-match-fixing-with-declan-hill-author-of-the-fix/

    Hills said yesterday at the conference that “the WCS2010 circus has a tag of roughly $10 billion. The gambling industry has an interest of $40 billion”.
    Not a single South African will see one dollar of the last figure, although SA mad the games possible.


  • Johan Knols on 10th May 2010:

    Another article that might confirm that the ‘man in the street’ is losing out: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/8663148.stm


  • Tiziana Cauli on 13th May 2010:

    Speaking of how the Fifa World Cup will boost business opportunities in South Africa, I just read an article on Fifa partners buying exclusive rights and keeping local entrepreneurs out of the market. There is the story of a South African key chains producer who was authorized to use the SA flag and the vuvuzela trumpet some years ago, but was contacted by Fifa recently, They warned him against using the words “World Cup”, “2010” and “South Africa.”

    Another, funnier case is that of South African middle-cost air carrier Kulula, which I’m sure you have taken if you have ever traveled across the country. Emirates is the official airline partner of the 2010 Fifa World Cup, so Kulula came up with an ad saying “Unofficial national carrier of the you know what” smile

    Fifa asked them to withdraw it. I hope they won’t be forced to do that.

    http://www.talentzoo.com/images/ul_images/ambush_0406.jpg


  • Johan Knols on 15th May 2010:

    Hi Tiziana,

    Thanks for commenting.

    I fully agree that the official “WORLD CUP 2010 SOUTH AFRICA” (here, I just said it) sponsors have far too much power. And obviously I have flown with Kulula, the most funny airline in the world.
    But what could the smaller SA entrepeneurs do to get a share of the pie?
    To me it looks as if FIFA is the pimp that all the companies that prostitute themselves listen to.


  • Inge on 16th May 2010:

    Hi Johan
    First of all, thanks a lot to all involved here for some outstanding thought-provocing articles and comments. Your contributions in particular resonate with me because of my own three decades in tourism, first in Europe and since 1987 in Southern Africa. Having experienced many ups and downs as well as numerous historic events and developments in the region first hand, I’m convinced that the bottom line at this stage reads: It will get worse, before it gets better.
    It’s not just the FIFA/MATCH doings and the overspending on preparations for the games that will break/have already broken a considerable number of necks. Nearly two years of below-average tourism revenue generated in SA and e.g. Namibia, and at least another one to come “thanks” to the credit crunch, greatly contributed to the average citizen getting into a downward spiral. The poor already became poorer and the middle class feels pressure too, not only because of price hikes in every-day goods but because an ever increasing number of people in these countries had started relying on steadily growing income from tourism and its side-kicks. It is unlikely that people who lost their jobs in the last two years will find themselves permanently employed again, after the world cup - some might get lucky and find temporary jobs for a month or two. Any statistics and prognosis trying to tell us differently, ignore the preceding events and pull the wool over our eyes as far as the short to medium term benefits of the games are concerned.
    Africa’s inhabitants in general, regardless of origin, and tourism people in particular, are a pretty resilient bunch, so yes, we are likely to bounce back - when credit crunch and world cup will long be forgotten, and if global warming does not put too great a lid on long-haul travels, too soon.
    That’s the one side of the coin, and the other does not look brighter because the “world cup balance sheet” is still missing two critical elements: the economic effect of the games on the entire Southern African Region and on those members of the respective tourism industries who where never meant to get a piece of the soccer cake - or were clever enough not to fall into MATCH traps.
    Just a few examples from my immediate environment: Small yet well-established SA inbound tour operator over 7 years: business down by 75%; small, young SA inbound tour operation selling upmarket 4x4 safaris on SA-NAM routes that started seeing growing demand until mid 2009: business down by 95%, well-established guesthouse at Namibia’s coast with above average success over 12 years: business down by 35%, well-established lodge in prime tourist location in northern Namibia with 15% annual growth over 5 years: business down by 50%.
    Does anyone seriously believe that these businesses will start re-employing staff or even growing their teams any time soon?!
    It’s important to pull SA’s neighbours like Namibia into the equation because their traditional tourist source markets are also badly affected by e.g. airlines offering over-priced tickets until very recently. Otherwise faithful repeat travellers to SA booked elsewhere this year because of higher than usual accommodation rates and lack of room availability, as long as MATCH held on to contracts. From a recent chat with a representative of SA Tourism I understood that a shocking 26000 rooms where released by MATCH in the last couple of weeks. Add losses in sales of transport, restaurant, excursions, etc. to the picture and we can probably increase your figures above by another billion - not yet including the long-term damages and domino effects of tourism businesses becoming insolvent.
    It is very unlikely that a reasonable number of hotel rooms and other tourist services can still be sold on short notice. The SA domestic traveller will try to avoid the soccer centres and those going on holiday trips during the games will probably try to escape to neighbouring countries where prices remained at normal levels, if they not decide to rather stay at home. South Africa will therefore lose out on domestic revenue too.
    South Africa will have some wonderful brand-new facilities to attract less ‘pimped’ events of more manageable proportions in future, which might proof the real gain of this excercise, next to the overall raised awareness of Southern Africa’s genuine values due to the press coverage. But until SA and affected neighbours like Namibia will have recovered from the compounded economic damages over the last couple of years, a lot of water will have gone down the Gariep and assorted other mighty African rivers. We all will have to get very smart, very creative, very conservative in our expectations of rewards very fast to make such a recovery possible at all - while the soccer millionaires go bank their next fat cheques at home…


  • Johan Knols on 17th May 2010:

    Hello Inge,

    Thanks for a your very elaborate comment.
    What irritates me the most is the ‘exaggerating factor’. As soon as a big event is staged (anywhere in the world) the first thing we hear is how good it will be for economic growth. That growth will only be there if you don’t have to pump billions into the event. That is the only reason Germany was able to make a profit from the 2006 World Cup.

    Furthermore, if you stage an event like this on a poor(er) continent, you can imagine (unless you are living in a carton box) that the local population wants to make a little extra as well. FIFA obviously knew that their big sponsors wouldn’t allow this and has taken the unaware residents of SA for a ride. No wonder they are complaining now.

    As for Africa’s tourism: tourism is a major industry in Africa and many countries depend on it for their foreign income. Yet, at the same time tourism is a very vulnerable industry. Would that explain the rush of accommodation owners to sign up with MATCH in the hope of not missing the boat?

    In the euphoric aftermath of the games having been awarded to SA, it seems that everybody went blind. Now the nation of the rainbow will have to live with the burden. There is certainly no pot with gold at the end of the rainbow.


  • David on 21st May 2010:

    I tend to agree, I read an article about the 2010 World Cup on the worldgame which seemed to paint a similar picture. The strain of the event on the economy of a relatively poor country is hardly worth any benefit they will gain.


  • Johan Knols on 21st May 2010:

    Hi David,

    We can only really tell way after the WCS if it was beneficial to South Africa. I am just worried that, as it always seems to go, we will hear the hot shots cheer and pat each others shoulders when indeed there is going to be a financial surplus and that it is going to be eerie quite if there is going to be a (big) loss. In that case the South Africans might regret the whole ordeal.
    At least they will all have a great time until 11/07/2010.


  • Johan Knols on 21st May 2010:

    For all of you who are interested: http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/davidbond/2010/05/will_the_world_cup_change_sout.html


  • Johan Knols on 25th May 2010:

    CNN article that confirms that only very few Africans will attend the games that are played on their continent. http://edition.cnn.com/2010/SPORT/football/05/24/football.world.cup.south.africa.fifa/?hpt=C2

    Dutch news tonight reported that if Holland makes it to the finals, Dutch companies will make revenue from world cup gadgets up to several tens of millions.


  • Ivaylo Vasilev on 26th May 2010:

    Johan, thank you for bringing up the topic; it’s very timely!

    I’m not exactly sure how your ‘costs’ point relates to SA’s underdevelopment. If the costs of hosting the Cup are large, then this means more money flowing into SA. You could well argue that the poor are also benefited, especially in the longer-run (the improvements in infrastructure is critical for a standard economy to perform well), but even if this is not the case - how exactly do they get hurt if their country receives such amazing international attention?

    Your point on income redistribution is well taken. Perhaps when it is the case for such “fixed” in-flowing investment, the government would be justified in levying higher taxes. It’s a pity that the income gap would deepen, and it’s certainly not fair.


  • Ivaylo Vasilev on 26th May 2010:

    The contrasts you are providing are actually quite striking (and a bit pathetic and sad…); I think they might come out as more salient once the Cup starts.


  • Johan Knols on 26th May 2010:

    @Ivaylo

    ‘If the costs are large, then this means that more money flows into SA’.
    Let me be the devils advocate and say: when the costs are high, money is (first) flowing away from the SA government towards the private SA sector that built all the venues and the infrastructure. This does not mean that extra money from outside is coming into the country, which will result in a plus on the balance sheets.
    If the SA government had spent all those billions of Rands directly towards poverty reduction, the results might have been a lot brighter.
    Empty stadiums (afterwards) will not benefit the poor. At the same time I am not saying that the extra exposure for SA will not have some positive effects. Surely there will be some, yet it will be FIFA who in the meantime has filled it coffers over the backs of the South Africans.
    And that is something that most forget in a country that is now already gripped by the World Cup Fever.
    You really belief the contrast will become more salient? What makes you belief that?


  • Ivaylo Vasilev on 26th May 2010:

    So what’s the alternative? Sure, we can always wish there is more money to more worthy causes. Here the alternative is that the Cup is housed elsewhere: and from what I read, this would mean no roads, no (even) short-term jobs, no visibility. Over the backs of SAs? I wouldn’t say so. What makes you say that?

    Even if the contractors are from outside, some of the money is bound to stay, as these things don’t get built in 1 day. We’re talking numbers here, so I guess we should wait for some detailed report to come out and then we’ll be able to discuss what and how increased to what end (huge FDI, infrastructure helps future economic growth, salaries to local SAfricans, etc). Empty stadiums, okay, let’s say they’ll be empty, how do they hurt the locals by being there?

    Salience I am sure will come. Media is bound to once in a while at least refer to the country and the situation there, and this information that you present would pop up. You can’t hide the gripping numbers. Even if media doesn’t reflect on this (tho certainly the more respectable would), people also ask questions. It’s a fever, after all. smile


  • Johan Knols on 26th May 2010:

    SA pumped in $3 billion. What they get back is only the revenue of the ticket sales (and they of course keep the new infra-structure). Only around 230.000 foreigners will visit the games and an appalling 40.000 visitors are expected from Africa (outside SA) http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/world/africa/10132613.stm) that is less than a normal premier league match in Holland.

    Also have a look at the figures again. http://www.fifa.com/mm/document/affederation/administration/01/18/31/86/fifa_fr09_en.pdf


  • Johan Knols on 27th May 2010:

    I have added a NEW POLL to the article so you can easily show who you think is going ‘to win’ the World Cup Soccer 2010.
    Happy voting!


  • Johan Knols on 01st June 2010:

    A nice blogpost about this topic and some great footage:
    http://www.thedailymaverick.co.za/article/2010-06-01-analysis-world-cup-will-give-sa-a-serotonin-shot-but-not-much-money


  • Johan Knols on 02nd June 2010:

    I have updated this post once again with more proof that the poor of South Africa and South Africa as a whole will only profit marginally from the World Cup Soccer next month.


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