Posted by: arkachips | April 10, 2009

London Olympics seeks bailout

‘Olympic planners have been forced to seek public sector support to bail out a £1bn athletes’ village project in east London, after a collapse in interest from private investors.

The European Investment Bank, set up as a development arm of the European Union, has approved a request for a £225m loan toward the scheme – which may yet require another £400m in direct government support unless financial conditions improve.

But John Armitt, chairman of the ODA, admitted earlier this year that it was possible that no private sector funding would be found for the Olympic Village, leaving taxpayers to foot the bill instead.

It is also possible the taxpayer-backed EIB would require the government to underwrite the loan, further straining its £2bn Olympic contingency fund and putting more taxpayers’ money at risk if the rent the housing associations earn from the flats does not recoup the cost of building them.

And right at the end, Tessa Jowell, the Olympics Minister, said they wouldn’t have bid if they’d known a recession was on the way….

We protested the bid, recession on the way or not, because the Olympics always seems to leave the host with huge debts. Huuuuge debts! Who ends up paying? We do. We the people.

Yes, it’s always fun to beat the French, and it was fun to to see that photo of the French sidewalk sellers with their discounted France Olympics t-shirts, but who has the last laugh now?

But I’m sure Ken and his motley crew are suffering the most. They flew all around the world talking up London, suffering untold hardships, and now they must be miserable at the thought of such crushing debt looming for their people. It was completely unforeseeable, after all.

It’s Easter. Time to be forgiving.

After Easter though, I say we hunt them down and dunk them in baked beans. Clothed. I think we’ve suffered enough without ‘pasty politician flesh’ added to our list of grievances.


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