RIO DE JANEIRO:  The 2014 FIFA World Cup will attract tourists from 186 countries to Brazil. Most of them, 62 percent, are visiting the country for the first time, according to Brazil’s Tourism Minister Vinicius Lages, today at the João Saldanha Open Media Centre at the Copacabana Fort in Rio de Janeiro.

According to Lages, more than 3.1 million Brazilian nationals and 600,000 foreigners are expected to travel throughout Brazil for the event. The government expects these tourists will inject R$ 6.7 billion in the economies of the 12 host cities.

In Rio de Janeiro alone, with only one match so far, US$ 50 million was injected into the local economy in three days, taking into account the average spending on transportation, lodging and food, according to Tourism Secretary of the State of Rio de Janeiro, Claudio Magnavita.

Tourism Secretary Magnavita provided estimates that 50,000 Argentineans came to Rio for the match yesterday in which Argentina defeated Bosnia-Herzegovina 2-1 at Maracanã Stadium. In total, Argentineans spent an average of US$ 1,000 per person during their stay in the city. Many visitors do not have tickets for the matches, but nevertheless have come to enjoy the World Cup’s festive environment.

In addition to the income generated from the tournament itself, the World Cup is an opportunity for Brazil in terms of visibility. According to Brazil’s Tourism Minister, the country is proving itself to be receptive and hospitable to tourists, and the event is highly positive. During last year’s Confederations Cup, 138 Brazilian cities were visited. “This figure is likely to at least double during the World Cup,” Lages said.

According to Brazil’s Tourism Ministry, the country is also gaining more visibility among those who are unable to travel to Brazil for the event. Around 3.6 billion people – almost half of the world’s population – are watching the World Cup on TV, the Internet, mobile phones and by other means.

The majority of visitors from more than 180 countries are coming to Brazil for the first time; estimates indicate the event will inject R$ 6.7 billion into the host cities’ economies.

Projections: Tourists and Expenditures by Host City
Host City Foreign Visitors Brazilians Expenditures in Brazil
Belo Horizonte 62,388 322,340 R$ 695,627,806.45
Brasília 79,610 411,319 R$ 887,652,035.48
Cuiabá 27,945 144,381 R$ 311,585,545.16
Curitiba 26,645 137,666 R$ 297,091,883.87
Fortaleza 65,313 337,449 R$ 728,238,745.16
Manaus 28,595 147,739 R$ 318,832,777.42
Natal 27,945 144,381 R$ 311,585,545.16
Porto Alegre 42,242 218,251 R$ 470,998,835.48
Recife 37,368 193,068 R$ 416,653,200.00
Rio de Janeiro 89,846 464,203 R$ 1,001,781,829.03
Salvador 48,741 251,828 R$ 543,461,748.39
São Paulo 63,362 327,375 R$ 706,490,048.39
PROJECTED TOTAL 600,000 tourists 3.1 million tourists R$ 6,690,000,000.00

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