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Government report finds Birmingham 2022 contributed nearly £1.2bn to economy

Featured image credit: Rob Ridley

Featured image credit: Rob Ridley

A government report has found that the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games contributed almost £1.2bn ($1.5bn/€1.4bn) to the UK economy, with nearly half of that in the West Midlands alone.

The Games are also said to have created “22,380 full-time equivalent years of employment” while contributing £79.5m in social value including community benefits and increases in wellbeing and earnings of volunteers.

“With over 1.5 million tickets sold, the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games was a record-breaking event that is still having a positive impact on the region two years on,” said UK Sports Minister Stuart Andrew.

“This report shows that hosting major sporting events in this country boosts growth, creates jobs and has a lasting social impact for communities and some of the world’s best athletes will once again descend on Birmingham for the European Athletics Championships in 2026.”

Birmingham saw an increase in visitors due to the Games, with a 6% increase in numbers when compared to pre-pandemic levels.

There were also global television views of 834.9 million, more than 215 million digital views, and 141 million interactions on social media.

“It was so much more than 11 days of sporting competition,” said Commonwealth Games Federation president Chris Jenkins.

“The report outlines the positive impact and lasting legacy of the Games, which contributed £1.2bn to the UK economy and £79.5m in social value.

“It drove trade and inward investment, created jobs and boosted tourism, with visitor numbers to Birmingham and the West Midlands in 2022 the highest on record. From increased civic pride and social cohesion, to promoting community sport participation, the Games were truly transformational.”

Despite the government’s positive report, a former adviser to Birmingham City Council said the hosting of the Games was a mistake.

Further doubts have been cast after the council confirmed in February that it would raise council tax by 21% after declaring itself effectively bankrupt.