UK trade boost from Olympics

The London Olympic and Paralympic Games gave the UK economy a £9.9 billion trade and investment boost, according to a new report. The boost came from businesses securing contract wins, additional sales and new foreign investment in the last year.

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Cable: Olympic trade figures a 'marketing exercise'

An official report claiming that London 2012 was worth £9.9 billion to UK trade is a “marketing exercise”, Vince Cable has admitted.

The Business Secretary said the figures may not survive “a rigorous academic approach” but added they were "the best we can do".

Vince Cable said many companies invested in the UK because of the Olympics Credit: Andrew Milligan /PA Wire

When grilled on the report on the BBC Radio Four Today programme, Cable said it was "essentially a marketing exercise, using methods approved by the National Audit Office, which is a very tough test."

He added: "It is the best we can do – it is not necessarily something that would pass muster in the best academic journals but a test of credibility has been applied to it."

The Government's £9.9 billion figure includes investments such as £1 billion for "regeneration in the centre of Croydon", 16 miles away from the Olympic Park.

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Olympics trade boost 'didn't happen' outside London

A small business leader has questioned whether the Olympic effect was felt outside London, saying many regional businesses put in work for contracts that "didn't materialise".

The national policy chairman of the Federation of Small Businesses, Mike Cherry, told the BBC:

Out in the regions, we found that the effect of the Olympics and Paralympics, and the contracts we were expecting, really didn't materialise as much as I suspect many people were hoping for.

A lot of work went into it at the very beginning, when it was all announced. But although some businesses certainly got some really good contracts, for the vast majority it just didn't happen.

– Mike Cherry

Read: UK economy receives £9.9 billion boost from Olympics

Were the Olympics good value?

  • The overall cost of London 2012 was £8.92 billion, the Government revealed in October.
  • That worked out at £142 per head for every UK resident.
  • The Games came in under budget, with £9.3 billion set aside.
  • The predicted cost when London won the bid in 2005 was just £2.37 billion.
  • Today's report says the Games gave the UK economy a £9.9 billion trade and investment boost.
  • It added that the total benefit to the UK could reach up to £41 billion by 2020.

Read: UK economy receives £9.9 billion boost from Olympics

Boris: 'Olympo-sceptics' proved wrong by success

Boris Johnson said the "Olympo-sceptics" were proved wrong by success of the London 2012 Games after it was announced the Olympics gave the UK economy a £9.9 billion boost.

London Mayor Boris Johnson pictured with Team GB after the 2012 Olympic Games.
London Mayor Boris Johnson pictured with Team GB after the 2012 Olympic Games. Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire

The Mayor of London said the country would now "defy the doom-mongers" when it comes to securing a permanent Olympic legacy.

"London is succeeding where virtually no other host city has, on track to secure a solid gold payback on the taxpayers' outlay and a rosy future for the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park", Mr Johnson added.

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Cable: 'No doubt' London 2012 a success story

Business Secretary Vince Cable said there was "no doubt" that the London 2012 Games was "a success story" for British business after it was revealed the UK economy received a £9.9 billion boost from the event.

Fireworks during the closing ceremony of London 2012.
Fireworks during the closing ceremony of London 2012. Credit: Press Association

Mr Cable said this has created "a multi-billion pound business springboard to take British expertise to the world", and UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) is "working hard" to make the most of the opportunity.

"Reaching £9.9 billion in the space of one year is an amazing achievement. I hope that companies of all sizes up and down the country follow suit and use the positive impact generated by the Games to reach out to new markets and grow their businesses", he added.

PM says Olympics boost shows 'you should think British'

David Cameron said the £9.9 billion boost the UK economy received from the London 2012 Games shows "you should think British".

David Cameron said the Games Makers at London 2012 left a social legacy.
David Cameron said the Games Makers at London 2012 left a social legacy. Credit: Tim Ireland/PA Wire.

The Prime Minister said it is "a reminder to the world that, if you want the best, if you want professionalism, if you want jobs done on time and on budget then you should think British".

Mr Cameron also highlighted the "social legacy" of the Olympics and Paralympics, saying "thousands of people have been inspired" following the success of the Games Makers volunteers.

UK economy receives £9.9 billion boost from Olympics

The London Olympic and Paralympic Games gave the UK economy a £9.9 billion trade and investment boost, according to a new report.

The increase came from businesses securing contract wins, additional sales and new foreign investment in the last year, the Government and London Mayor Boris Johnson said.

Fireworks at the opening ceremony of the London Olympic Games 2012.
Fireworks at the opening ceremony of the London Olympic Games 2012. Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire

Strong progress has been made against all the legacy commitments including an increase in volunteering, 1.4 million more people playing sport at least once a week than when the bid was won in 2005 and the legacy of the permanent venues in the Olympic Park secured within a year of the Games.

Independent research projects that the total benefit to the UK from hosting London 2012 could reach up to £41 billion by 2020, the report added.