Baku: The lavish and impressive opening ceremony of the inaugural European Games cost 100 million manat (R608 crore approximately), revealed Azerbaijan Sports Minister Azad Rahimov on Saturday. No expense was spared -- pop diva Lady Gaga being the surprise headline attraction — by the organisers which saw it cost more than double that of the 2012 Olympic Games in London which had a budget of $42 million.
Whereas the London organisers deployed 10,000 performers, the Baku spectacular used 2000 and the former lasted four hours -- including a mock up of Queen Elizabeth II parachuting out of a helicopter with fiction’s most famous secret agent James Bond -- while the European Games show was half that time.
“100 million manats were spent on the opening ceremony of the European Games,” said Rahimov at the The Baku European Games Organising Committee conference.
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