Office of the Premier
Ministry of Competition, Science and Enterprise
2010: THE ECONOMIC IMPACT OF THE WINTER OLYMPIC GAMES AND PARALYMPIC GAMES
Findings of the study conducted by the capital projects branch, Ministry of Competition, Science and Enterprise, January 2002: Benefits of successful mega hallmark events:
- Long-term economic benefits from visitors who come as a result of an event's worldwide exposure are larger in total than short-term economic benefits.
- Hallmark events foster a public sense of economic momentum. This, in turn, fosters new investment and economic growth.
- Mega events have a profound impact on the international convention business in host cities. Sydney increased the number of international convention bids it won by 34 per cent after it was chosen in 1993 to host the 2000 Games. Barcelona achieved a 21 per cent annual compound growth in international delegates in the six years following the 1992 Games and a 29 per cent increase in the year of the Games.
Benefits to tourism:
- International media exposure increases awareness and pushes international visitor volume to a permanently higher plateau. In the 14 years before Expo 86, British Columbia's share of total international visitors to Canada was between 9.5 per cent and 11.6 per cent. During Expo 86, this jumped to more than 17 per cent. Since then it has increased every year from 12 per cent in 1987 to 17.4 per cent in 2000.
- Vancouver and Whistler in particular and British Columbia in general will have their profiles raised throughout the world, strengthening tourism. Before the Calgary Winter Olympics in 1988, Alberta had an average annual growth of annual international visitors of 0.25 per cent (1972-1985). In pre-Olympic years the number of visitors grew by five per cent in 1985 and eight per cent in 1986. In the Olympic year, growth surged to 12 per cent and then retained all of its post-Olympics gains, with an average annual growth of 3.25 per cent for the first five post-Olympic years. This compared with an average annual loss of 2.5 per cent for the rest of Canada, excluding British Columbia.
- International tourism in Norway increased by 43 per cent between 1990 and 1994 leading up to the Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, probably as a result of increased media awareness generated by the upcoming Games.
- The Games could be expected to replicate the enduring economic and psychological stimulus achieved with Expo 86.
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