Toronto’s economy will gain around 26,000 new jobs because of the 2015 Pan Am and Parapan Am Games, finds a new report from CIBC World Markets.

It will also likely get a significant boost from the tourism and infrastructure spending surrounding the 2015 Pan Am and Parapan Am Games.

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The stimulus of a big sporting event tends to be limited and temporary if the host’s economy is weak or on the decline, but Toronto’s is already going strong.

The city has ranked number one on CIBC World Markets’ Canadian Metropolitan Economic Activity Index rankings since the summer of 2011.

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The preparations for the Pan Am and Parapan Am Games have given Ontario’s economy an added boost from capital spending. More than 20 venues are being built for the Games, and the West Don Lands, a 32 hectare former industrial site, are being overhauled with athlete housing. Toronto and surrounding communities are hosting the sports events.

The Games will also give a boost to tourism in the province. It estimates that if Ontario sees the same percentage jump in tourism that Vancouver did during the 2010 Winter Olympics, it could have as many as 350,000 visitors, well above the official estimate of 250,000.

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If 75% of those tourists are Americans, who are far bigger spenders than overseas or domestic visitors, the increase in tourist spending during the Pan Am Games alone should generate an additional $260 million in gross domestic product and add more than 3,500 jobs in the sector.

An estimated 7,500 athletes are expected to take part in the Toronto Pan Am Games, three times more than the number of competitors in the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games.

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