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Last Updated: Thursday, 6 January, 2005, 00:01 GMT
SA in World Cup economic countdown
By Bill Wilson
BBC News business reporter

Danny Jordaan, who led the bid to secure the 2010 World Cup
Danny Jordaan: "World Cup can help South African growth"

The organisers of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa are hoping it will stimulate the nation's economy and leave a lasting physical and social legacy.

Danny Jordaan, the man who led the bid to secure the event, believes hosting the World Cup could be worth as much as $6bn (3.18bn) to South Africa, while also boosting the construction, telecommunications and tourist industries.

South Africa predicts at least 400,000 people will visit the country for the tournament, the first World Cup ever to be held in Africa.

Some 160,000 jobs are expected to be created from hosting the event, according to the national football bid committee.

And, although there are five years to go until the big kick-off, those responsible for making it a success have warned it is "just around the corner".

We hope to have a World Cup on the African continent that will bring economic progress to as many people as possible
Danny Jordaan

Mr Jordaan, general secretary of the South African Football Association (Safa), told BBC News: "We have had a study done by KPMG which shows the World Cup will be worth in the region of 30bn rand ($6bn; 3.18bn).

"The first industry to benefit will be the construction industry - building roads, stadia, bridges.

"Then the technology and communications industries too, including broadcasting.

"There will be other benefits for the tourism industry, and the World Cup will further strengthen its growth.

"All of this will provide a professionalism for further South African growth."

The key issue, Mr Jordaan said, is the legacy left by the tournament.

"What is the infrastructure legacy in terms of stadiums? What is the human resources legacy? We can leave a social and economic legacy to continue for years after the World Cup.

"The World Cup can help address some of the employment and housing issues we have here - a situation inherited by people after 30 years of neglect and oppression."

Beneficiaries of 2010 World Cup

New markets

Mr Jordaan said South Africa would need skilled administrators for the World Cup.

But he added: "With regard to event management, our track record shows we are able to safeguard every visiting team. Last year we had the England team, we have also had Spurs here."

Mr Jordaan also said the World Cup could open new markets for European firms.

"The smarter international corporates will get on the ball by incentivizing their South African workforces in the run-up to 2010, and they will really see the benefits.

"Also, investing in a South African soccer club means you may have two to three million people within a 10-mile radius of the stadium....Yet it would not cost much in European terms to build a brand new stadium."

No vanity projects

The last World Cup, held in Japan and South Korea, saw many new futuristic stadiums built.

However, many of them now stand empty.

Mr Jordaan, with Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu
Mr Jordaan, Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu with the World Cup

Trevor Philips, chief executive of the South African football league, told the BBC: "From a soccer point of view, it is essential there is an improvement in infrastructure. The key benefit legacy has to be stadiums that are there to be used regularly over decades to come.

"We have got to achieve a legacy of a number of stadiums holding 14,000 to 20,000 people, so we might say to developers, build a futuristic new stadium but build a 15,000-capacity venue that we can use after the World Cup."

There are also hopes that other industries can benefit.

Mvuzo Mbebe, managing director of South African Broadcasting Corporation, said: "We can give football something new. And we believe we can upgrade the capacity of African broadcasting."

During the 2002 World Cup, only five out of every 500 supporters came from Africa, again something which the organisers hope to change for 2010.

Mr Jordaan said: "Ticketing is the responsibility of Fifa, but instead of the normal three-tier ticket structure, we have provided a fourth tier which will provide for African football fans...This African World Cup will be affordable to African fans.

"Football will always be a great bonding influence. We also hope to have a World Cup on the African continent that will bring economic progress to as many people as possible."

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