Rio de Janeiro Olympics opportunity for Chinese investors: former ambassador

09:32, October 04, 2009      

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Former Chinese ambassador to Brazil Chen Duqing said Saturday China may play a significant role in Riode Janeiro's preparations for the 2016 Olympic Games.

"Compared with the other applicants, currently Rio de Janeiro still has a lot to do to improve its sports facilities and other infrastructure, which indicates a special opportunity for Chinese companies," Chen told Xinhua Saturday in an exclusive interview.

The costs of preparing for the event in 2016 are estimated at roughly 12 billion U.S. dollars. However, the event is expected to generate 250 billion.

Zhou Zhiwei, an expert in Brazil studies with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, noted that for Rio de Janeiro, traffic and infrastructure are the city's weak points.

Beating rivals Chicago, Tokyo and Madrid, Rio de Janeiro won the right to host the world's largest stage of sporting events after three failed attempts.

Rio de Janeiro's win also marks the first time that an Olympic Games will be held in South America.

Chen said as big third world countries, both China and Brazil have cooperated closely in applying for host cities, making preparations and organizing the Games in the past few years.

In 2007, China's General Administration of Sports sent teams to Brazil to draw experiences from the Pan American Games. During last year's Beijing Olympics, the Brazilian Olympic Committee and the Rio de Janeiro bid team came to China to watch the games.

Besides the Games, Rio de Janeiro, along with another seven cities, was also expected to host the 2014 World Cup, which required large investments in infrastructures in terms of sports facilities, transportation and reception, Chen said.

"Just like their Beijing friends, I believe people in Rio de Janeiro will also enjoy rich benefits brought along by the Olympic Games," he added.

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