The FIFA World Cup is an international sporting event. This event is held every four years. However, the host country changes every time. Countries have to bid against each other in order to win the rights to host the next World Cup. Many economists have questioned this practice. However, none have been able to find any conclusive benefit of hosting the World Cup. To most economists as well as to common people, this seems to be a waste of money and resources. However, the trend of holding World Cup still continues.
In this article, we will have a closer look at how hosting the FIFA World Cup impacts the local economy.
Women’s football in India has improved a lot over the past decade. With the recent investments coming into place, the game is becoming a better product.
Over the last 10 years, there is a level of consistency achieved in regards to involvement in youth and senior competitions. I hope to see more role models come to light, who will inspire future generations.
The World Cup will have a huge impact in the country, not just on the women’s game but also on the men’s. You saw what happened when India hosted the FIFA U-17 World Cup India 2017, and how much it changed the demographics and direction.
It is true that the game is the chief form of entertainment in many countries across the world. Also, the game provides the host country with a lot of pride and publicity. However, this does not justify the extent of economic costs that have to be incurred to host the World Cup. Several countries have fallen into debt traps after holding the World Cup.
It is strange that the economic benefits of the FIFA World Cup are still often cited by the mainstream media. The reality is that the upside, if any, is vastly overstated.
Alternate Expenses Not Considered
The problem with accounting for the FIFA World Cup is that all the expenses incurred are simply included in the benefit caused by the World Cup. Any economic analysis should always account for opportunity costs. However, the FIFA analysis never takes any opportunity costs into account. The reality is that if the FIFA World Cup were not being hosted, roughly the same amount of money would be spent. People would spend roughly the same amount of money on watching movies, going for dinner, etc. FIFA World Cup merely diverts the expenditure towards football grounds.
FIFA lays down tough conditions for countries who want to host the World Cup. These countries are expected to have high-quality sports grounds. Also, there is a need for more hotels and even temporary housing to accommodate the players as well as fans from other countries. These expenses have to be borne by the government. Often a lot of this infrastructure is not used later. There have been countries like Greece, where there are calls to break down the stadiums that were built for the Olympic games. The standards set by FIFA are very high. This becomes a problem since the high standards translate into high expenses for the host country.