2012 Olympic cost plans 'unrealistic', says MPs

The UK government was "entirely unrealistic" in estimating the cost of hosting the 2012 Olympics, a group of MPs have said.

The Public Accounts Committee said ministers used "wishful thinking" and "ignored foreseeable major factors" such as tax and security.

At the time of the bid, costs were estimated at just over £4bn, but last year the budget was put at £9.325bn.

Responding to the publication of the report, SNP MP Pete Wishart said Scottish good causes must not be “ransacked” to meet the spiralling cost of the 2012 Olympics.

Mr Wishart said:

"This is an utterly damning report, which confirms the concerns that the SNP has been raising since day one. Not only has parliament been misled over the cost of the Olympics, but this report also confirms that the budget is well and truly out of control.

“The London Olympics are set to be the most expensive of all time – costing equivalent to £1million for each minute of actual competing.

“Scottish funds have already been raided to subsidise the spiralling costs of the London Olympics, and they must not be ransacked again.

“Alarm bells are ringing, and we must have concrete assurances that good causes in Scotland will not pay the price for Labour’s incompetent accounting.

"Of course the Olympics is great news for London, but good causes in Scotland, Wales and across the English regions should not be short-changed to subsidise these games.

“If there was an Olympic medal for financial mismanagement and bungling, the UK Government would get gold.”

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