The budget covers 27 projects in urban development and public
transport, including 8 billion reais for a newly added fourth metro
line for Rio, Brazil's congested second largest city, where getting
around town is an ordeal.
Other initially envisaged projects were excluded, such as the
upgrade to Rio's international airport Galeao, which has been handed
to private operators.
Rio Mayor Eduardo Paes said the higher budget was due to the
inclusion of new projects and inflation, which has blown up costs by
30 percent since Rio won hosting rights for the event in 2009.
Paes said 57 percent of the infrastructure costs would be paid for
with public funds, coming from federal, state and municipal
governments, and the rest would be private.
The total cost of Rio 2016 has risen to 36.7 billion reais, which
does not include more than half of the 52 projects or facilities
that will be used exclusively for the games and still require
So far, only 24 projects have been budgeted at 5.6 billion reais.
Additionally, the organizing committee's budget has risen 27 percent
to 7 billion reais.
This operating budget was originally set to include up to 1.4
billion reais in public funds but officials changed their minds in
response to public outcry over the high cost of stadiums and other
projects required by the Olympics and 2014 World Cup, which kicks
off in June.
The Rio 2016 organizing committee estimated in 2009 that the games
would cost 28.8 billion reais in total.
With just over two years to go, the International Olympic Committee
and world sporting federations last week criticized the Brazilian
government for the slow pace of work, and some asked about
contingency plans should Brazil fail to deliver.
Construction work at the Deodoro Olympic Park, where eight events
will take place, has yet to start, and the pace of progress at other
venues is slow.
The terms of the tenders for Deodoro would be published on Thursday
and work was scheduled to start in the second half of this year,
Brazilian officials said.
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"We have no room to spare with Deodoro. We cannot make a single
mistake here. But there is still time to get it done," Paes said at
the budget announcement, flanked by Brazil's Sports Minister Aldo
Competitors have criticized the filthy waters where sailing events
will take place in Rio's Guanabara Bay, yet the budget for
infrastructure includes little work to clean up pollution in the
A strike over pay at the Olympic Park in coastal Barra da Tijuca,
one of the main venues, continued on Wednesday. Some employees
returned to the construction site but union leaders convinced them
not to work.
Mayor Paes said the facility, originally built for the 2007 Pan
American Games, was still "on schedule".
Brazil is racing to finish soccer stadiums in time for the World
Cup, a prestigious event its leaders hoped would signify the South
American nation's emergence as a world power but now risks being an
international embarrassment that could get worse if the Rio Olympics
are similarly troubled.
($1 = 2.2388 reais)
(Additional reporting by Rodrigo Viga Gaier and Anthony Boadle;
editing by John O'Brien)
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