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Paris 2024 budget to be 'studied' by end of year

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Paris (AFP)

Organisers of the 2024 Paris Olympics will review the risk of extra expenditure for the event due to the coronavirus pandemic by the end of the year, sources said on Wednesday.

French President Emmanuel Macron, International Olympic Committe (IOC) chief Thomas Bach and the head of the organising committee for the Games Tony Estanguet met earlier in the day in the capital.

The city's first Olympics since 1924 are set to have a budget of 6.8 billion euros ($7.71 billion) with Estanguet's local body covering 3.8 billion euros of the cost.

According to the Elysee source, the trio "considered together that it was relevant in the months to come, before the end of the year, that the organising committee with the regional groups" of the state "could study collectively how they can best reduce all risks of overspending."

They added the move is part of the "options that they are susceptible to activate if they see that the economic situation worsens.

In addition, Bach's IOC might consider some further changes including the amount of competitors present which is currently set to be 10,500.

The number of beds at the athletes village in the northern Parisian suburb of Saint-Denis has already been reduced from 18,000 to 15,000.

"There could be a debate that the IOC is ready to listen about the number of athletes sent to the Games and the way some disciplines are organised," the source said.

"The numbers qualified in a discipline" have consequences on the costs or the "size of the Olympic village."

This year's Tokyo Olympics were moved to 2021 due to the COVID-19 oubtreak but a poll carried out by two Japanese news organisations showed half of the city's residents don't think the Games should be held at all.

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