Olympics legacy: London 2012 Games have given UK £10bn windfall already, say ministers


Chief Reporter

Lavish hospitality laid on for foreign dignitaries and businessman during the London Olympics has helped British companies secure contracts and agreements abroad worth £1.5bn in areas including oil drilling in Brazil and nuclear power in Jordan.

A government report into the economic legacy of the 2012 Games published today estimates that the sporting extravaganza has garnered a £9.9bn windfall in trade and investment for the battered economy, potentially rising to £41bn by 2020.

The study highlights the importance of the British Business Embassy, held in the chandelier-bedecked surroundings of Lancaster House where delegations from Brazil to China were schmoozed last summer with Michelin-starred cuisine to help win new deals.

The Independent revealed last year that the Government had drawn up a list of 50 investment projects around the world – ranging from controversial oil exploration in Kazakhstan to building Russian railways – which ministers and officials were expected to target during the Games.

The report by UK Trade and Investment said that in the 12 months since the Olympics and Parlaympics, “High Value Opportunity” contracts worth £1.5bn had been won in locations including Singapore and Saudi Arabia due to “credentials established through London 2012 and UKTI-led events”.

The agency said an energy forum at the “Embassy”, attracting more than 570 delegates, had helped lay the groundwork for contracts including £950m of business related to oil drilling in Brazil and Nigeria. Delegates from Jordan and the Czech Republic, where Britain is working to develop civil nuclear programmes, also attended events at the building. A separate event at Lancaster House also helped secure a deal with India to co-operate on urban planning.

The “Embassy” in Lancaster House was an attempt to rekindle the success of events such as the 1951 Festival of Britain by presenting a “showcase of national enterprise and innovation”. Visitors were presented with tablet computers highlighting British products and promised “visionary menus and food presentations”.

Vince Cable, the Business Secretary, said: “There is no doubt that the London 2012 Games proved a success story for British business. This has created a multi-billion pound business springboard to take British expertise to the world.”

The UKTI report said the Olympics had also helped secure significant inward investment, including the targeting of up to £10bn spending by Qatar. The gas-rich emirate, which is hosting the 2022 football World Cup and has awarded contracts in excess of £70m to British design firm Atkins, is considering investments in energy plants, roads and the Thames “super-sewer”.

Suggested Topics
voicesSiobhan Norton on why she eventually changed her mind
Life and Style
fashion Designs are part of feminist art project by a British student
Snoop Dogg pictured at The Hollywood Reporter Nominees' Night in February, 2013
people... says Snoop Dogg
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
food + drinkZebra meat is exotic and lean - but does it taste good?
Arts and Entertainment
Residents of Derby Road in Southampton oppose filming of Channel 4 documentary Immigration Street in their community
Arts and Entertainment
The Tour de France peloton rides over a bridge on the Grinton Moor, Yorkshire, earlier this month
Scottish singer Susan Boyle will perform at the Commonwealth Games opening ceremony in Glasgow
commonwealth games
Lane Del Rey performing on the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury 2014
people... but none of them helped me get a record deal, insists Lana Del Rey
Arts and Entertainment
Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson stars in Hercules
filmReview: The Rock is a muscular Davy Crockett in this preposterous film, says Geoffrey Macnab
Caption competition
Caption competition
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy': A land of the outright bizarre

Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy'

A land of the outright bizarre
What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

‘Weird Al’ Yankovic's latest video is an ode to good grammar. But what do The Independent’s experts think he’s missed out?
Can Secret Cinema sell 80,000 'Back to the Future' tickets?

The worst kept secret in cinema

A cult movie event aims to immerse audiences of 80,000 in ‘Back to the Future’. But has it lost its magic?
Facebook: The new hatched, matched and dispatched

The new hatched, matched and dispatched

Family events used to be marked in the personal columns. But now Facebook has usurped the ‘Births, Deaths and Marriages’ announcements
Why do we have blood types?

Are you my type?

All of us have one but probably never wondered why. Yet even now, a century after blood types were discovered, it’s a matter of debate what they’re for
Honesty box hotels: You decide how much you pay

Honesty box hotels

Five hotels in Paris now allow guests to pay only what they think their stay was worth. It seems fraught with financial risk, but the honesty policy has its benefit
Commonwealth Games 2014: Why weight of pressure rests easy on Michael Jamieson’s shoulders

Michael Jamieson: Why weight of pressure rests easy on his shoulders

The Scottish swimmer is ready for ‘the biggest race of my life’ at the Commonwealth Games
Some are reformed drug addicts. Some are single mums. All are on benefits. But now these so-called 'scroungers’ are fighting back

The 'scroungers’ fight back

The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Amazing video shows Nasa 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action

Fireballs in space

Amazing video shows Nasa's 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action
A Bible for billionaires

A Bible for billionaires

Find out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Paranoid parenting is on the rise - and our children are suffering because of it

Paranoid parenting is on the rise

And our children are suffering because of it
For sale: Island where the Magna Carta was sealed

Magna Carta Island goes on sale

Yours for a cool £4m
Phone hacking scandal special report: The slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

Glenn Mulcaire was jailed for six months for intercepting phone messages. James Hanning tells his story in a new book. This is an extract
We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

Child abusers are not all the same, yet the idea of treating them differently in relation to the severity of their crimes has somehow become controversial
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

For instance, did Isis kill the Israeli teenagers to trigger a war, asks Patrick Cockburn