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BRISBANE: Australia said Friday it will spend Aus$7.0 billion (US$4.8 billion) on venues for the 2032 Brisbane Olympics, including a new 17,000-seat arena and a revamp of the Gabba stadium.

The Queensland capital was awarded the 2032 summer Olympics and Paralympics two years ago, returning the Games to Australia for a third time after Melbourne 1956 and then Sydney 2000.

Queensland’s state government will pump Aus$2.7 billion into redeveloping the Gabba, expanding its seating by 8,000 to 50,000.

In addition, Brisbane’s city centre will get a new Aus$2.5 billion 17,000-seat indoor stadium, paid for by the federal government. It will include a drop-in swimming pool that can be removed after the Games to create a live events venue.

Another Aus$1.87 billion in state and federal funding will go on 16 new or upgraded venues.

“It is quite clear that we needed to step up and do our part not just to create the best Games but also to leave a lasting legacy for Queensland and for all those who visit this great state,” Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said at a news conference.

The Australian leader said there would be other “important milestones” in the lead-up to 2032.

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“This will make an enormous difference to our economy, to our lifestyle, to how Australia is perceived as well in the world, which is why it is important that we get this right. And I am very confident that we have done just that.”

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said 80 percent of the infrastructure for the Games was already in place.

“This will cement Queensland’s place internationally but also, too, it is a lasting legacy for our athletes, our young people and also about creating a healthier lifestyle.”

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