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IOC Member Critical Of Sochi Costs, Corruption

A test road sign with the Olympic logo installed at the Olympics Transport Directorate in Sochi (file photo)
A member of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) says the reported $50 billion Russia is spending on the Sochi Olympics is an exorbitant sum that serves as a "bad example" for other countries.

Gian-Franco Kasper, a Swiss who also heads the International Ski Federation, said in an interview with the Reuters news agency that the cost of Sochi could be more than China spent to host the 2008 Summer Olympics, which was a much bigger event than the winter games.

Kasper said most countries, including Switzerland and France, could not afford to spend $50 billion to host a Winter Olympics.

In an interview this week with Switzerland's SRF radio, Kasper alleged that about one-third of the funds Russia is spending to host Sochi have been wasted as a result of corruption and embezzlement.

Based on reporting by Reuters and