Olympic Costs

The most pessimistic estimates of the final bill for the London 2012 Olympics were vindicated yesterday when the most senior civil servant involved on the project admitted that the entire £2.7bn contingency fund for the project would probably be spent.

Err, no.

The admission means the final cost is likely to be at least £9.3bn, more than double the figure given in London\’s bid book, a disparity which the Labour MP Don Touhig described as "the most catastrophic piece of financial mismanagement in the history of the world".

Again, no.

What we have here is that the most absurdly optimistic estimates have been shown to be the grossly untrue guff of lying bastards. Politicians, at the risk of repeating myself. The current numbers, £ 9 billion or so, are at least potentially somewhere in sight of reality. Realistic estimates are in fact more like Wat Tyler\’s. £20 billion and counting by the time it\’s all finished. Pessimistic estimates would of course have to be north of that figure.

Sorry folks, but this ain\’t over by a long chalk. If you want pessimism, think of Wat\’s point, that this is the largest peacetime construction project ever attempted in hte UK. And think how, say, Connecting for Health, the largest IT project ever attempted, looks like coming in at £30-£40 billion or so.

Do I hear any advance on, say 0.5% of GDP in order to host an outdoor steroids party?

One comment on “Olympic Costs

  1. Wouldn’t 20bn be more like circa 1.5% of GDP? Terrifying really.

    Tim adds: Oops, yes, my bad. I was thinking £50 billion on a 1,2 trillion GDP. 5% (or more accurately, 4%).

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