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The $15.4 billion spent on the Tokyo Olympics, the most ever for the international games, could have won a gold medal for global good, according to a recent study by the University of Oxford.

The money could have built 300 300-bed hospitals, each of which costs about $55 million in Japan.           

it might also have funded the construction of 1,200 elementary schools, at a cost of about $13 million each.

The jet-set crowd, meanwhile, might have purchased 38 Boeing 747 aircrafts – about $400 million per plane.

The perspective comes at a time when the Olympic Games are under increasing scrutiny for the shocking cost of the events.

“The [International Olympic Committee] and host cities have no interest in tracking costs, because tracking tends to reveal cost overruns, which have increasingly become an embarrassment to the IOC and host cities,” Oxford author Bent Flyvberg said in an email reported by The Associated Press.

The Opening Ceremony of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games
The Opening Ceremony of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games was surely an expensive proposition.
VCG via Getty Images

Critics say the stated $15.4 billion price tag of the games does not tell the full cost.  

“Several Japanese government audits say the real outlay for the Tokyo Games is even more than the official figure, perhaps twice as much,” the AP reports. “All but $6.7 billion comes from public money from Japanese taxpayers. According to the latest budget, the IOC’s contribution is $1.3 billion.”

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