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Madrid: Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy yesterday opened the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) evaluation team’s visit to Madrid by claiming the city deserves the right to host the 2020 Olympic Games.
The Spanish capital was unsuccessful in its attempt to host the 2012 and 2016 games, but that could now play to its advantage with 28 of the its proposed 35 venues already constructed.
And Rajoy was also keen to stress the country’s experience in hosting big sporting events and large numbers of visitors.
“Madrid has a great advantage,” he told a press conference on Monday.
“Of the sports facilities needed to hold an Olympic Games, 80 percent are already built. In addition, it is a city well used to hosting major events.
“Spain is a country too that is fortunately very used to welcoming visitors. It is the third leading country in the world for annual number of visitors, with 58 million tourists coming to our country last year alone.”
Rajoy also played down the concerns that hosting the Olympics is the last thing that Spain’s beleaguered economy needs in the midst of a crisis.
He claimed that the bid had public support. Afp