Economic Effects of World Cup 2014
In 2003, Brazil successfully bid to host the 2014 World Cup. Since then, significant economic and social improvements have been realized to further bolster the country’s investments in social welfare programs to reduce poverty. However, the preparation of World Cup 2014 has been marred by protests. Now, this is understandable because the tournament has cost Brazil huge economic and social costs. This is in the public domain.
About one fifth of Brazil’s population lives below the poverty line. Stadium’s construction and transportation investments cost Brazil about $12billion. The economic disparity in Brazil is huge. Forbes 2012 ranked Brazil 5th country in the world with the largest billionaires. Interesting, out of 65 billionaires in Brazil, 25 of them happen to be blood relatives. Prior to World Cup 2014 kick-off, street decorations sat uneasily along the protest graffiti.
Pew Research Centre (PRC), a pollster, contends that hosting World Cup 2014 was such a big mistake. The squandering of public resources as well as eviction of people to facilitate stadia construction has exacerbated this situation. Priorities inversion in usage of public funds has fueled these protests.
Re-election of President Dilma Rousseff
Brazilian politicians are hedging their hopes upon World Cup 2014 victory. Since 1994, presidential elections and World Cups take place in the same year. This creates elegiac synchronicity between politics and football. The re-election of President Dilma Rousseff in October is predicated, to some extent, by the success of Brazil in World Cup 2014. However, there are those who think Brazil’s victory or loss in World Cup 2014 has little impact on Dilma Rousseff’s re-election.
An early exit for Brazil would further disillusion the holloi polloi. Public safety, protests, and other problems in World Cup 2014 will spell doom for Rousseff since it will create more discontent and negativity. The incumbent’s rivals are relying on this disillusionment to topple her.
The 67-year-old Rouseff is Workers’ Party flagbearer. A recent presidential poll showed her leading with 39% followed by her nemesis Aecio Neves at 21%. Her popularity has been on the decline with harsh criticism being meted upon her. Brazil’s opening game against Croatia saw Rouseff being openly vilified through insults, jeers, and boos. Rouseff, an economist by profession, is regarded a dogmatist and high-skilled politician.
Indeed, there is a conflicted mood carrying an assortment of both frustration and expectation in World Cup 2014 for Brazil. Brazilian football fanatics are rooting for a sixth world cup trophy. The government would want to show that Brazil is economically developed. For President Dilma Rousseff, success for Brazil football national team will set the stage for her re-election.