U-20 World Cup cancellation causes Rp3.7-trillion losses: Minister

U-20 World Cup cancellation causes Rp3.7-trillion losses: Minister

Tourism and Creative Economy Minister Sandiaga Uno. (ANTARA/HO-Tourism and Creative Economy Ministry/rst)

Jakarta (ANTARA) - Tourism and Creative Economy Minister Sandiaga Uno estimates that the state's losses due to cancellation of Indonesia's hosting of the 2023 U-20 World Cup will reach at least Rp3.7 trillion (around US$247 million).

The minister explained that the losses included costs borne by the Ministry of Public Works and Public Housing (PUPR) and the Ministry of Youth and Sports, which exceeded Rp500 billion, to renovate several football fields.

"The revenue target based on the number of spectators, which is around two million in the matches that have been arranged in the six cities, amounts to at least Rp3.7 trillion," the minister remarked after inaugurating the Lido City Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in Bogor, West Java, Friday.

He noted that over 50.000 supporters and foreign tourists were expected to come to Indonesia.

Meanwhile, the number of spectators for each match in six cities totaled 2.3 million, he stated.

Uno assessed that apart from the huge loss, Indonesia also missed the opportunity to hold a world-class tournament like the World Cup in Qatar.

In addition, losing its host status for the tournament could have an impact on Indonesia's medium- and long-term reputation, which has so far been successful in hosting several international events, such as assuming the ASEAN chairmanship.

On the other hand, he believes Indonesia can immediately organize other activities to minimize these losses.

"It has been difficult for us to build our reputation. We must not let it be affected. I am optimistic that if we work together, we will be able to stand up straight and be strong. We must quickly move on to conduct other activities to avoid any loss in the future," he remarked.

Earlier, the hosting of the U-20 World Cup in Indonesia had become a cause for concern for several parties in Indonesia after the rejection of the arrival of the Israeli national team, one of the participants. Bali Governor I Wayan Koster even sent a letter to the Youth and Sports Minister stating that Bali was reluctant to host matches involving Israel.

Based on these rejections, FIFA canceled the official draw for group assignments scheduled on Friday, March 31, before completely canceling Indonesia's hosting of the 2023 U-20 World Cup.

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