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14 Nov 2016

Belarus to spend about $50m on 2nd European Games

MOGILEV, 14 November (BelTA) – Belarus will spend about $50 million on the organization and holding of the 2nd European Games, Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko said at the meeting with the personnel of OAO Mogilevkhimvolokno on 14 November, BelTA has learned.

“We have calculated that we will be in the black. We will have to spend about $50 million over the years. It is a drop in the ocean for the country. Perhaps, we will not have to spend this amount: Europeans said they will help us,” Alexander Lukashenko said.

The President explained that before the nomination of Belarus as the candidate to host the competition, Belarusian experts made corresponding calculations. “There would be huge expenses if we had, for example, to host the Olympic Games,” he added.

The head of stat emphasized that Belarus is ready to host the 2nd European Games at the highest level. “There are enough hotels in Belarus. We will use health resorts around Minsk and student villages if necessary,” Alexander Lukashenko remarked. The President added that there are many sports facilities in country, the construction of the Dinamo stadium is in progress, plans have been made to erect a national football stadium.

“Yes, we would like to have a better swimming pool in Minsk, but we have a very good swimming pool in Brest,” the Belarusian leader said. “As for regions, if they are ready to host competitions in any sports, accommodate teams and organize tournaments, they can do it. We can consider this option. If we do not build as good swimming pool as the one in Kazan, we will, probably, hold the swimming competition in Brest.”

According to the head of state, Baku spent $100 million on the opening ceremony of the 1st European Games. “We will not do it. We will have a warm opening ceremony to show the soul of our nation. We will have a beautiful ceremony. It will cost even less than $1 million,” Alexander Lukashenko said.

The President stressed that such high-profile competitions help improve the image of the country, and this is the main thing. “People will come to Belarus. They will see our country. The same happened during the IIHF World Ice Hockey Championship. Did we lose anything? No. We used it to our advantage,” the head of state said. “Having decided to be sovereign and independent, we must understand that it costs a lot. And if we can make profit, we must do it.”

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