• Will Robinson

Brisbane’s financial expectations for 2032 Olympic Games

By Will Robinson

August 12, 2021

Photo Credit: Associated Press

The 2032 Olympic Games received just one submission for its host city: Brisbane, Australia.

As odd as that may sound, it makes sense when considering the extreme costs and logistical nightmares behind the international event.


To host the Olympic Games, cities typically spend billions of dollars on things such as application fees, transportation systems, event venues, housing, staffing, and more.

While these costs must be expected to put on such a grand event, recent studies have found that Olympic costs overrun estimations by an average of 170%.


Furthermore, the money brought in by selling TV rights, ticket sales, and merchandise is not enough to offset the expenditures. In fact, the last time the Olympics was actually profitable was in 1984, when Los Angeles hosted the Summer Games.


Andrew Zimbalist, an Olympic economist, believes this year’s Games in Tokyo have resulted in a $35 billion loss: the greatest any Olympics have ever seen.


While this all seems to spell bad news for Brisbane, there is a bit of optimism to be had. The city is well prepared from a venue standpoint, with 84% of the infrastructure already built and ready to use. These savings have resulted in a lower-than-typical budget estimate of only $3.7 billion.


Additionally, hosting the Olympics is not all about money. The city has the special opportunity to showcase itself globally, attract millions of tourists, and instill national pride in its citizens.


At the end of the day, these benefits will have to outweigh the costs for the Australian metropolis because the only gold it will realistically see is at the top of the podium.