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
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Day In a Page

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003
Barbara Woodward: Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with the growing economic superpower

Our woman in Beijing builds a new relationship

Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with growing economic power
Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer. But the only British soldier to be awarded the Victoria Cross in Afghanistan has both

Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer

Beware of imitations, but the words of the soldier awarded the Victoria Cross were the real thing, says DJ Taylor
Alexander McQueen: The catwalk was a stage for the designer's astonishing and troubling vision

Alexander McQueen's astonishing vision

Ahead of a major retrospective, Alexander Fury talks to the collaborators who helped create the late designer's notorious spectacle
New BBC series savours half a century of food in Britain, from Vesta curries to nouvelle cuisine

Dinner through the decades

A new BBC series challenged Brandon Robshaw and his family to eat their way from the 1950s to the 1990s
Philippa Perry interview: The psychotherapist on McDonald's, fancy specs and meeting Grayson Perry on an evening course

Philippa Perry interview

The psychotherapist on McDonald's, fancy specs and meeting Grayson Perry on an evening course
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef recreates the exoticism of the Indonesian stir-fry

Bill Granger's Indonesian stir-fry recipes

Our chef was inspired by the south-east Asian cuisine he encountered as a teenager
Chelsea vs Tottenham: Harry Kane was at Wembley to see Spurs beat the Blues and win the Capital One Cup - now he's their great hope

Harry Kane interview

The striker was at Wembley to see Spurs beat the Blues and win the Capital One Cup - now he's their great hope
The Last Word: For the good of the game: why on earth don’t we leave Fifa?

Michael Calvin's Last Word

For the good of the game: why on earth don’t we leave Fifa?