RIGA - The Latvian government decided to invest additional EUR 3 million in hosting the Ice Hockey World Championships, said Education and Science Ministry's sports department director Edgars Severs in a press conference today.
He said that on January 21, the government heard the report of the Latvian Ice Hockey Federation on hosting the championship and necessity for another ice arena. "Our weakness was lack of another arena. In order to adapt the Latvian Olympic Sports Center for the needs of the championship, another EUR 3 million are needed," he said.
Another EUR 700,000 have already been earmarked in the budget in line with earlier government decision.
Severs said that the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) has estimated that the total costs of the championship will be up to EUR 14 million, including EUR 2 million earmarked for development and supervision of Covid-19 protocol.
IIHF has confirmed its readiness to cover expenses related with Covid-19 tests. Severs also noted that about 70 percent of the championship costs will stay in Latvia's economy - hotels and services needed for the championship.
"The Ice Hockey World Championship is one of the most important sports events, it is followed by hundreds of millions of people across the world. It will be a chance for Riga to prove that we are able to organize high level sports events," said Severs.
As reported, the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) Council has voted to confirm Riga as the sole host for the 2021 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship.