Sßo Paulo problem

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With Sáo Paulo, Brazil's biggest city (population 20+ million) and financial hub, still yet to guarantee its seemingly obvious position as host of the 2014 FIFA World Cup Opening Match (given Rio de Janeiro will host the final), the country's sport minister Orlando Silva has once again attempted to force the issue by putting an April deadline for works on the city's most likely host stadium.

To be built from scratch in the eastern quadrant of Sao Paulo, the Itaqueráo Stadium is being developed by the Corinthians Football Club, one of Brazil's oldest and biggest, on land donated to the club in the 1980s. Although Corinthians has only backed the development of a 40, 000 seat facility, the Sáo Paulo government is facilitating an expansion to 65, 000 for the Cup Opening. Various issues in relation to the stadium remain unresolved, including the structure of National Development Bank financing, the final budget of contracted developer Oderbrecht, and certain legal and council issues involving the site. Beyond these, the actual stadium design is also in question, with FIFA having highlighted in February 2011 a range of areas requiring alterations, including the final design of temporary seating structures, certain spaces determined too small in key areas and the quality of finishes in others. The sport minister said the April 2011 deadline is crucial to ensure the city's preparations meet the chronology demanded by the 2014 FIFA World Cup. If the unthinkable happens and the city does not provide a suitable stadium in time, the main contenders for the Opening match are Belo Horizonte, Brazil's mining capital and third main hub, the country's capital Brasilia, and Salvador, the first colonial capital of Brazil and one of the oldest in the New World. Sao Paulo is a global metropolis featuring Brazil's best options for eating, sleeping, shopping, touring and doing business. With a metropolitan population of over 20m (11m in municipality), Sao Paulo is the biggest city in the southern hemisphere and has the money, action and congestion to prove it. Brazil's business capital receives around 90, 000 events per year the city, while of the 160 fairs that occur in the country, 120 are hosted in Sao Paulo. The city's cultural areas are also extensive, with its diverse cinemas, museums, cultural centres, theatres and show houses ensuring its position as the country's entertainment hub. Despite all this activity, wealth and sophistication, when it comes to the 2014 FIFA World Cup the city is way behind in its preparations and close to losing its logical position as host of the opening ceremony, with not one of its range of stadia even close to being ready to host the showpiece event. Having initially chosen the privately owned Morumbi Stadium (Sao Paulo Football Club) for the role, the idea has long since been discarded as financing for the proposed refurbishment was considered too problematic. As reported earlier, the new option is the Corinthians Football Club's Itaqueráo Stadium, which is to be built from scratch in the eastern quadrant of Sao Paulo. Although Corinthians has only backed the development of a 40, 000 seat facility, the Sáo Paulo government is facilitating an expansion to 65, 000 for the Cup Opening. Thankfully, few other infrastructure issues hinder the city's ability to host the opener, with one glaring exception: Guarulhos International Airport. While hotels and urban transport systems should easily handle the event's requirements, Sáo Paulo's main airport is woefully in need of a major overhaul to the point that wildly negative press from both Brazilian and international travelers alike seems to be a daily occurrence. For the World Cup, Guarulhos is slated to receive a third terminal, possibly as a PPP (an option currently being debated at the federal government level), and major upgrades to existing facilities at an estimated cost of over R700m. About Simon TarmoA journalist from Sydney, Australia, and co–founder of industry journal Australian Sponsorship News, Simon Tarmo now lives in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. Having worked on a range of writing, research and trade projects across a number of industries including sport, entertainment and wine, he is currently focusing on business opportunities involving the 2014 World Cup and Rio 2016 in Brazil. With fluent Portuguese language skills, he has an extensive network of contacts throughout Brazil and can advise and assist foreign groups doing business in the country. More details http://simontarmo. blogspot. com/ ~ Simon Tarmo+55 31 9196 0069simon@pando. com. auhttp://simontarmo. blogspot. com/

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