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Olympic countdown

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Media Release

The Federal Minister for Sport and Tourism, Jackie Kelly, says Australia is well on track to deliver the greatest Olympic Games in the history of the event.

The Minister says the quality of preparations is first class and Australians everywhere should feel enormously proud of the great national effort behind the Games and Paralympics.

“This will be Australia’s Games and I predict great sporting and economic victory”, Jackie Kelly said.

Commonwealth support for the Sydney 2000 Games has risen to over half a billion dollars to ensure that all Australians benefit.

“Not only is Federal Government support crucial to the staging and security of the Games, but we’re playing a vital part in the preparation of our athletes through the Government’s Olympic Athlete Program. A total of $140 million has been made available specifically to prepare the Australian teams for the Sydney 2000 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

“We now have the world’s best stadiums, pools and tracks and - most important of all - we have the athletes who will win gold. Our young sports men and women are the greatest and with the home crowd advantage we’ll have in September and October 2000 we will be ' unstoppable.

“The Commonwealth will also subsidise the attendance of school children from around Australia at the Sydney 2000 Paralympic Games at a cost of around $1.5 million and will contribute over $500 000 to make the Paralympic Torch Relay a national event, incorporating

all State and Territory capital cities.

“Some $6.5 million has also been committed to enable the Australian Customs Service to undertake a range of border activities at the time of the Games. This funding will provide Customs with the additional resources to effectively meet the heavy demands which the Games will impose on passenger and cargo processing capacity.

“A powerful economic legacy of the Games is an expected doubling of inbound tourism to Australia by 2008 with tourism set to continue as Australia’s big new jobs generator.

“What has been achieved to date is of enormous credit to the many thousands of Australians who have been helping with the preparations”, Minister Kelly said.

Media Inquiries: Peter Cassuben 02 9247 5378/9 CRM404

Minister for Sport and Tourism

Wednesday, 15 September 1999 99 295


Parliament House, C anberra ACT 2600 Tel: (02) 6277 7080 Fax: (02) 6273 4 5 7 1