Lula says Brazil's economy development makes it possible to host Olympics

19:03, October 01, 2009      

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Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva said here on Thursday that rapid economic development in recent years made it possible for Brazil to host an Olympic Games.

He told a press conference in Hotel Skt. Petri where he has lived that Brazil has been experiencing a period of fast economic development in recent years.

"The economy makes it possible" for the South Amercian country to organize a Olympic Games, said Silva, who is known as Lula.

The Brazialian President is here to lobby International Olympic Committee (IOC) voters to vote for Rio de Janeiro to host the 2016summer Olympic Games.

The IOC's 121st Session will select the host city Friday evening among the Rio, Chicago, Tokyo and Madrid.

"Rio wants to catch the opportunity to organize the Olympic Games," he said. "Brazil wants to prove it can organize the best Olympics Games."

"This is the very first time that Brazil truly prepares itself" for winning the right to host the Olympic Games.

He said that he came to Copenhagen to show the members of the IOC that Brazil had professionally engaged the state, municipal and federal governments to prepare for the sport event.

He voices strong confidence that Rio would make it in winning the right of hosting the 2016 Games.

"Yes, we can. We can do it," he said, "We will do it to organize the Olympic Games."

Lula said that he would talk about the future of Brazil in Rio's final presentation in front of the 100-plus voters to win over their votes.

He would say that Brazil has highly-regulated financial system to weather the financial crisis, invested a lot in infrastrutural construction, created 24,000 new jobs last year alone and would take the advantage of its deep sea oil to finance the preparation of the Olympic Games.

Asked to compare this campaign with his political campaign in the past, he said, "This is the same kind of convincing campaign".

He said he would have to convince the IOC voters that the largest sport event should not always be held in rich nations and South America should have a chance, just like he went to the street to convince the Brazilian people that he was the person who could improve their standard of life despite his background of relatively low education.

At the same time, Lula said there was still a lot to do in the six years to come for hosting the Olympic Games.

Brazil and Chicago are seen as the front runners among the four candidate cities.

U.S. President Barack Obama will come to Copenhagen to drum up support together with his wife for their hometown, Chicago.

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