Rio de Janeiro, Aug 24 (IANS) The impending Rio Paralympics could be facing its most serious financial crisis to date but the Games’ Director of Media and Communications, Craig Spence, remains confident about its success.
The Games will be held from September 7 to 18 here but Spence said the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) remained positive about its outcome, reports Sputnik.
International Paralympic Committee (IPC) head Phillip Craven earlier commented that “never before in the 56-year history of the Paralympic Games have we faced circumstances like this”.
Despite the unprecedented setbacks this year’s Games have faced, Spence said the Paralympics will still go ahead as planned. The IPC is currently trying to work with the organising committee in Rio to sort out the financial deficit, which cast doubts on whether many countries would be able to participate at all.
“Well, the Rio Organisation Committee is responsible for raising funds and Brazil has faced serious economic problems in the last two years. Somewhere in the budget that they have earmarked for the Paralympic Games, the money just isn’t there. So we have had to work with the Olympic Committee,” Spence said on Tuesday.
Recently, as many as 10 countries signalled they may have to pull out of the Games due to the financial woes. However, Spence denied this would present an issue, insisting that the downscaling of the event is not an option.
“There will be no downscaling, those 10 countries that said they cannot make the Games, we have been in contact and they will be able to travel, so all 165 countries will be there on the 7th September,” Spence added.
In addition, it has been noted that the troubles faced by the Paralympics this year could impact on future broadcasting and sponsorship deals.