Olympic deal ‘will help UK firms’

British construction companies could be set for an edge on rivals when bidding for sporting contracts if building work on the new London 2012 venues goes well, Olympics minister Tessa Jowell has predicted.

Businesses could be helped by a new deal, signed by Prime Minister Gordon Brown and the Brazilian president Lula, which will see business experience of hosting and building for the Olympics being shared before Rio de Janeiro hosts the 2016 games.

Construction companies will be looking to benefit from investment and infrastructure contracts worth up to £30 billion in Brazil, which is also gearing up for the 2014 Football World Cup.

This includes work in engineering and construction, but also setting out stadia, IT and sports consultancy.

Ms Jowell told 500 British company chiefs at the 2012 Games Business Summit at London’s ExCel Centre: “When it comes to competing for Brazil, UK companies with expertise in delivering sporting events will have a major advantage.

“Being a company that will work on 2012 will give you a unique currency to the global marketplace.”

There are still approximately £1.7 billion worth of contracts still to be awarded by the London 2012 organisers and the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA), which is in charge of Olympic build and infrastructure for London’s £9.3 billion Olympic project.

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