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Opinion / Editorial

How many millions of euros do we earn from participating in the European Championship?

How many millions of euros do we earn from participating in the European

We should not feel bad about our national team's narrow defeat on June 15 against Italy in the European Football Championship in Germany. Participating in the European Championship is first and foremost a great celebration and all 50,000 of our wonderful fans at the Dortmund Stadium proved that. In addition to the money left on travel tickets to Germany, on hotel and food payments and on the tickets booked for the three safe matches of our national team (over 18.5 million euros), we must understand that participating in the European Championship is also a benefit. not insignificant for our economy. For example, participation eight years ago, in 2016, in the European Championship in France brought us about 20 million euros. And this time, how much will this money be? How is it possible that even if we go abroad as fans and leave money, we still manage to earn money? Even, much more, at the level of our economy? There are several reasons for this. First, this includes the direct benefits for the Albanian Football Federation. According to information from the European Football Federation (UEFA), the fixed participation payment (benefit) for each of the federations participating in Euro 2024 is much higher, almost twice as high (plus 86%), than the participation in France eight years before. It will be 9.25 million euros. So, our Football Federation will receive these funds. The second reason is related to our wonderful and peaceful fans, Albania has risen high in the European arena, as a peaceful and civil country. Our fans gave in Germany only signs of celebration and friendship with the German hosts and the Italian fans. They will do the same tomorrow in Hamburg, in the match against Croatia. This is a constant behavior of our fans abroad and it honors us and makes us gain a lot in the image of our country itself. Although this increase in the country's image does not obviously translate into money, it leads there. This, since the image of Albania as a very civil state, with wonderful, friendly, cheerful and completely peaceful citizens, greatly contributed to the increase of the tourist flow to us. Thirdly and most importantly, the high level achieved in our football is a premise for the further development of this sport and all other sports in our country. And the development of sports increases our standard of living and reduces our stress as a society. This is more proven. Fourthly, the image of Albania as a wonderful tourist destination also wins with this European. Improving the image and increasing the desire to see Albania from the Germans, where the championship is taking place, makes us win a lot. But why? Because the Germans are the number one tourists in the world, in terms of the number of people who leave the country for tourism every year (60 percent) and in terms of money (they rank third in the world) that they spend per tourist. Fully 4 thousand three hundred euros per year per tourist. But let's do the math with the three reasons that generate money.First, the funds that our Football Federation receives from UEFA, for participation in this year's European Championship. There are a total of 9.25 million euros. These funds can be translated very quickly for new training facilities, for better conditions for all those who enter the professional activity in this sport, and so on. If the funds for football in Albania are increased this year by 9.25 million euros, the government is ready to give in the 2025 budget for all sports as a whole about twice this amount. So we have at least 28 million euros more for sports in these two years. In case we add to these funds the increased pronotations for tourism throughout the year for the next year, from more than 25 thousand German citizens, who will come through agencies or from the good impressions received about Albania and its fans in individual level. And if we count at least one thousand euros spent per German citizen as a tourist in us for a week during the next year, it adds up to 25 million euros more in our economy. At the general level, the concrete benefits are expected to exceed 53 million euros for our economy, and this is not a little.