PARIS (Reuters) – Last year’s European Championship soccer tournament generated a 1.22 billion euro ($1.3 billion) boost for host France, a study commissioned by the French government showed on Wednesday.
It said that 2.5 million fans attended the games even as France extended a state of emergency and intelligence agencies warned of the threat of militant attacks during the month-long tournament.
The report, unveiled by the Centre of Law and Economics of Sport and the Keneo agency, said fans spent an average of 154 euros per day during their average 7.9 day stays – with just over a third of that amount being spent on accommodation.
According to the document, 75 millions euros, including 70 million in VAT, went to the French state.
Organizers UEFA were exempted from taxation in 2014 but French sports minister Patrick Kanner said that it remained a “good operation economically”.
“They did not pay taxes but they paid 20 million euros to rent stadiums, 20 million euros to finance the cities and five million euros for the fan zones,” he said.
(Reporting by Julien Pretot; Editing by Richard Lough)