This tiny island has seen its fair share of huge sporting events.
Ranging from the Suzuki Cup to the internationally-acclaimed Formula One night races, Singapore has hosted these events with confidence.
Now, the 2015 SEA Games beckons in June in conjunction with the nation’s Golden Jubilee, and Singapore Southeast Asian Games Organising Committee (SINGSOC) Executive Committee Chairman Mr Lim Teck Yin believes that this could be Singapore’s biggest sporting event, but only if Singaporeans take ownership of it.
SINGSOC Executive Committee Chairman Mr Lim Teck Yin. (Photo by VoxSports)
Speaking at a press conference on January 28, Mr Lim defined one of the success factors of the SEA Games to be local support for the Games. According to a survey done by SINGSOC, 70% of Singaporeans are supportive of the Games while 28% are still neutral.
“The first thing we would define as successful is when Singaporeans feel that they are proud of, they own and they come out to support the Games," said Mr Lim.
There are ongoing initiatives such as the Make-a-Nila programme, school roadshows, as well as the participation of athletes within local community events to raise awareness for the biennial event.
The Make-a-Nila programme is currently on-going islandwide. (Photo by VoxSports)
There will also be carnivals held during the Games in order to entice the public - notably those with families - to attend the event and show their support.
“I believe that it will be celebration of Singapore's 50th anniversary so we want people to come out in a celebratory mood, cheer on Team Singapore and rally around our call that we are all One Singapore,” Mr Lim said.
Tickets have been kept affordable with the lowest ones prices at $5 while at least half of the sports are open to the public to attend for free.
Tickets to the 28th SEA Games are kept affordable, with the lowest price being S$5. (Photo by SINGSOC)
In a bid to attract more spectators, SINGSOC adopted a clustered approach in organising competition venues. Venues clustered in close proximity of each other allow people to have the option of attending multiple sporting events over various venues.
This is complemented by group discounts of 4 tickets and more so families can attend the Games together, added Mr Lim.
“We are hoping that over the course of the Games that we will receive up to 800,000, if not up to a million visitors,” explained Mr Lim.
In order to facilitate the working community, Team Singapore events have also been strategically scheduled on weekday nights and weekends for the home crowd to come out and support what will possibly be the nation's biggest contingent sent to a SEA Games yet.
Announcing the $324.5 million SEA Games budget at the press conference, Mr Lim said that while it is the minimum sum required to run the Games, SINGSOC will strictly adhere to it.
$148.3 million will be spent on competition costs including logistics, broadcast and technology. $52.7 million will go into security, administration, legal and insurance costs while the opening and closing ceremonies will cost $33.6 million in total.
Another source of financing will come from sponsors, with an additional $60 million already pumped in. This surpassed the original target of $50 million.
“We would like to thank our sponsors for their generosity and enthusiasm to give back, without them some things would not be possible,” Mr Lim said.