FIFA World Cup 2014 – A long road to be paved

It is no news that Brazil is going to host big events in the coming years. Between June 12th and July 13th in 2014, twelve cities from all the five regions of the country are going to host the FIFA World Cup – Rio de Janeiro, Belo Horizonte, Brasília, Recife, Fortaleza, Salvador, São Paulo, Porto Alegre, Manaus, Natal, Curitiba and Cuiabá –, while the six cities heading this list will also host the Confederations Cup in 2013.

Mobility infrastructure projects are still ongoing, and the states governors, together with the FIFA Committee, are constantly inspecting the progress of the work and accomplishment of deadlines. Over BRL 33 billion will be invested in airports, stadiums and new public transportation solutions in order to receive the 600.000 tourists expected to come.

In early February, for instance, the government of the state of Minas Gerais fined in BRL 1 million the construction company in charge of reconstructing Mineirão stadium, in Belo Horizonte, for water supply, bars and cafeterias.

FIFA demanded that all the arenas must be delivered by December 2013, naturally excluding those hosting the Confederations Cup. In the state of Mato Grosso, the work in Arena Pantanal reached the mark of 62% concluded. In Cuiabá, the capital of the state, the construction of mobility advancements such as viaducts and an underground tunnel is also ongoing. In Brasília, the capital of Brazil, the arena is 89% concluded. The most delayed arena is the one in Natal, state of Rio Grande do Norte, which is 52% concluded.

Two of the twelve arenas have been delivered so far, and the Federal Government and Ministry of Sports claim that occasional delays will have no impact in the events, and all arenas will be delivered.

The Ministry of Communications authorized Anatel to start the necessary administrative procedures for allocating the 700MHz band of analog television broadcasting for the 4G mobile broadband services. The measure aims to promote the digitalization of the television system as well as to accelerate the installation of 4G coverage in urban and remote areas of the country. Cities hosting the Confederations Cup may expect to receive this coverage by the end of April, and the other cities hosting the World Cup may too, by the end of this year.

In São Paulo, for example, the city hall and the Ministry of Culture try to align the activities on the cultural level and what will be left for the city after the mega event, as well as the image of Brazil that will be presented to the world.

In Rio de Janeiro, the public transportation projects linked to the mega events include the new TransCarioca, an express bus corridor connecting Barra da Tijuca to the International Airport Galeão. This project shall be concluded within this year, and the stations are connected to several other transportation systems in different districts of the city. TransOeste and TransOlímpica and TransBrasil are also express bus corridors connecting further districts of Rio and reducing the commuting time. The city is also revitalizing the port and expanding the airport capacity.

The international airports Galeão (Rio de Janeiro) and Confins (Belo Horizonte) are to be privatized in 2013. The current expansion projects aim to raise the passenger capacity from 10,3 to 17,5 million/year in Confins airport, and from 17,4 to 44 million/year in Galeão, and both projects shall be delivered before the World Cup.

Included in the BRL 33 billion investments, BRL 1,879 billion will be invested in public security actions, such as strengthening the infrastructure of the country’s borders, acquisition of systems and equipment for improving the security in these borders, systems for centralizing security operations, and radio communication integration solutions between states’ and federal institutions. The number of policemen in the arenas is expected to be 1 per 50 people. Other areas of investment are capacitation, training, simulating and supervision of the security institutions effectiveness, airspace defense and control, maritime defense, helicopters, cyber defense and security, defense against terrorism, supervision over explosives, among other items.

The Confederations Cup will be held in just a few months, and will serve as a test for Brazil to show the world that the country is not only a booming economy capable of hosting a mega event such as the FIFA World Cup, but also an important nation in the globalized world. Brazil is using this unique opportunity to consolidate itself as a country in the right path towards development.

If the framework keeps being followed as such, and being closely supervised by both local authorities and the FIFA Committee, we can expect to see a very beautiful event, hopefully with a happier outcome than that of 1950 in the newly opened Maracanã stadium, when Brazil lost the final match against Uruguay.

Publicist, language teacher, learning Mandarin, writing my travel guide.

Posted in Brazil

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