Update on London 2012
Reporting on the London 2012 Olympic Games, the Chairman of the IOC Coordination Commission, Denis Oswald, told his EB colleagues that he remained very happy with the development and progress taking place in London at this six-year-out point.
‘London has made a lot of progress and the timelines of the project are going according to schedule,” said Oswald. “I am particularly pleased to see the way that the London Organising Committee – LOCOG – and the Olympic Delivery Authority – the ODA – are fully integrated. Also notable is the excellent recruitment policy being used to bring on board senior management. The recruitment has taken some time, but it has been time well invested, and we see that reflected in the work being done.”
Making specific reference to the budget issues which have recently been the subject of much media coverage in the UK, Oswald was at pains to stress to his colleagues that he was not unduly concerned and that there was a good deal of misinformation on this subject which should not be taken at face value. “It would be wrong for the IOC to make knee-jerk reactions to the figures being mentioned and to the discussions of the past weeks since we prefer to take a closer look when we visit London next year. But when we discussed figures with the organizers in October we were comfortable with how things stood. I believe we will see an operational budget still in line with the bid-book. The Government investments budget only partly concerns Olympic projects. I believe the increases mentioned have nothing to do with the Games and can be easily explained, but we will look into this more with our London colleagues in due course. It is important that media don’t lump all costs together under ‘Olympic costs’ when in reality only part of the investments are directly Games related. When things are not clearly explained it gives a false impression of what hosting the Games truly cost, which is of course very frustrating for the IOC. A clear differentiation should be made between the various costs, so that it is clear which are truly Games related costs and which are costs associated with other investments that are using the catalytic effect of the Games to make projects happen sooner and faster.”