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World Cup 2010 revenue falls short of expectations

  • Reuters, Tuesday, December 7, 2010 1:13 AM

The World Cup helped to rebrand South Africa but brought in far less money than anticipated. Tourism during tournament brought in some $519.6 million, far less than the government had initially expected, said Tourism Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk. The South African government spend nearly $6 billion rand on infrastructure but the global economic downturn contributed to fewer overseas spectators attending the games.

"There are a number of discussions that are taking place on options on how the stadia can be used," Van Schalkwyk said. Options being explored include the South Korean example, where housing developments and shopping centers were incorporated into stadiums.

The World Cup helped to improve global perceptions of the continent's biggest economy, which had been known primarily for high levels of crime, Van Schalkwyk said. "Almost 90 percent of tourists said they would consider visiting South Africa again, while 96 percent said they would recommend the country to their friends."

More than 300,000 people visited the country for the tournament: 38 percent coming from within Africa, 24 percent from Europe, 23 percent from Central and South America, and 11 percent from North America.

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