• Spain's news in English
 
app_header_v3

'A Madrid Olympics means more jobs '

AFP · 29 May 2013, 10:00

Published: 29 May 2013 10:54 GMT+02:00
Updated: 29 May 2013 10:00 GMT+02:00

The 62-year-old former judoka - who is also president of the Spanish National Olympic Committee - insisted the bid had united people nationwide who see it as a way of easing the dire situation of the Spanish economy.

Unemployment was at a record 27.16 percent overall at the end of the first quarter.

But such is the enthusiasm across the country that Spain's World Cup and European Championship-winning coach Vicente del Bosque has been encouraged to sign up as an unpaid volunteer.

"It is clear that hosting the Olympic Games will serve as a booster for all the economic spheres of our country," said Blanco.

"This is a project for Spain. The whole country is involved - the business world, top political and sporting authorities, the media and the whole of Spanish sport.

"However, it is citizens' support that matters the most. This support is reflected in both our surveys and those conducted by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), which increase day after day as we move towards September (the vote for who hosts the Games takes place on September 7 in Buenos Aires).

"There are more than 40,000 volunteers already, and interestingly, our volunteer number 40,000 is the Spanish national team coach, Vicente del Bosque.

"It is essential for all of us to reach victory and this is why we work 24/7."

Blanco disagreed with some IOC members who claim Madrid will reach the second round of voting at the expense of one of the other two candidates, Tokyo or Istanbul, because they built up a considerable amount of goodwill and a favourable reaction before finishing second behind Rio de Janeiro in the bidding for the 2016 Games.

"First of all, I have to say we respect all opinions, but we believe this is our best chance to be awarded the Olympic Games by the International Olympic Committee, and this is the reason why we are working and explaining our project," he said.

"We have nothing but gratitude, hope, passion and certainty in success. If we all gather as a country we may win. If we truly believe, we must fight. This is a project for Spain, aiming at achieving social transformation through sport."

Blanco said that placing the emphasis on youth was particularly important in Spain, where the rate of unemployment for those between the ages of 16 and 24 has soared to 57.22 percent.

"This bid has been designed for young people," he said.

"We have been listening to them since the beginning of the bid and we know what they want and what they expect from us. According to surveys, 90% of people under 35 support the Games in our city.

"This is the best indicator proving that youngsters see the Games as a window to opportunities, and a boost to recover from the difficult situation we are currently going through. According to our motto, illuminating their future is our priority."

Blanco also said there was no contradiction between two of the bid's claims.

Story continues below…

Madrid have emphasized that the costs of preparing for the Games would be minimal because most of the venues and infrastructure are already in place, while at the same time saying a Madrid win would boost employment, which traditionally for Olympic hosts means in the construction area.

However, Blanco claims the boost in employment will come from other sectors.

"The Madrid Bid has a clear message: 80% of the venues are already built, while the investments for the remaining premises are fully guaranteed," he said.

"The whole project is being developed under a SMART-city concept, which involves optimization of resources and control over investments.

"The studies carried out for our bid state an important number of jobs will be created not only in the construction sector, but also in other important areas for our economy such as tourism and the hotel industry."

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Beach closed after shark attack in southern Spain
Arenas del Sol beach in Elche was packed at the time. Photo: VisitElche.com

A man was bitten on the hand in a suspected shark attack at a beach on the Costa Blanca on Friday prompting authorities to ban swimming as a precaution.

Madrid ups ante against Catalan separatist lawmakers
Independence flags in Catalonia. Photo: AFP

Spain wants to nullify a text approved by Catalonia's parliament urging the region to push ahead with its independence drive, warning separatist lawmakers of severe consequences.

The good, bad and the ugly of long distance relationships
Are their advantages to loving from afar? Photo: MsSaraKelly / Flickr

Dating guru Sally Fazakerley gives us the lowdown on what it is really like to endure a long-distance relationship.

Thousands hunt Pokémon Go in Madrid to break record
Pokémon fans gather in Madrid's Puerta del Sol. Photo: AFP

It may only have been officially launched in Spain two weeks ago but already Pokémon Go already has so many fans here that Madrid set a world record.

Manhunt in Spain for abductor of teenager in Britain
Have you seen this couple? Photo: Metropolitan Police

A European Arrest Warrant has been issued for a Romanian 27-year-old accused of abducting a teenage girl from East London.

Barcelona unveils 'shame counter' of refugee deaths
Not just a number. Photo: AFP

The counter will update with each refugee victim who drowns at sea.

Spain's King Felipe VI tasks Rajoy with forming new govt
Rajoy in parliament last week. Photo: AFP

Can Rajoy do it or will there be third elections in Spain?

The Local list
Ten great reasons to discover the real Malaga right now
Malaga's modern port. Photo: Nick Kenrick/Flickr

Don't just fly into the airport and head straight for a beach resort. Here is why Malaga is now a destination in its own right.

Summer jobs bring Spanish unemployment to six-year low
Spain's tourism boom creates summer jobs. Photo: AFP

Spain's jobless rate slipped to 20 percent in the second quarter of 2016, as the tourism boom provided much needed seasonal work.

Weather
Heatwave continues and then Spain's set for sand storms
Keeping cool in a Madrid fountain. Photo: AFP

Across Spain, 22 provinces are on alert for extreme heat as temperatures soar to above 42 C.

National
7 reasons why grandparents in Spain are simply the best
Travel
Barcelona bans Segways from tourist clogged waterfront
National
Spain pays €300m each year in pensions… to dead people
Sponsored Article
Why Swiss hospitality graduates are in demand
National
Police issue guidelines as Pokémon craze sweeps Spain
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
National
Another dodgy art restoration raises alarm in Spain
National
Watch: Man in wheelchair zooms past Barcelona traffic
National
Woof! How to find dog-friendly beaches in Spain
Sponsored Article
Five things Americans should know about voting abroad
Travel
Tourist sparks bomb scare by locking suitcase to park bench
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
Technology
Five brilliant apps to help improve your Spanish
National
Top ten tricks to survive the Spanish summer
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Travel
Off the beaten track: 14 best kept travel secrets in Spain
International
Keep calm and wait and see: Advice for expats post-Brexit
Features
Top 10 Spanish treats to keep you cool in summer
Sponsored Article
Why Swiss hospitality graduates are in demand
National
'I've had best time ever' insists American gored in bull run
Health
How to avoid heatstroke when Spain starts to sizzle
International
Champion of expat property rights in Spain awarded gong
National
Scorchio! Heat warnings issued across Spain
National
Brits demand dual citizenship for expats in Spain post Brexit
Sport
Spanish matador gored to death in the ring
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
Lifestyle
Eleven types of men you might typically date in Spain
National
Spanish police rescue British teen trapped by dad in house for two years
Features
Seven burning questions for British expats about Brexit
Technology
Six free apps to simplify your summer in Spain
3,274
jobs available