London 2012: Hunt rejects 'austerity' Olympics
The culture secretary has rejected claims that the London 2012 Games should be an "austerity" Olympics.
Jeremy Hunt told the Daily Telegraph that rather than cutting its budget, the economic downturn meant the event's opportunities must be "harnessed".
Mr Hunt said voters would not forgive the government if it failed to make the most of the Games.
The government has provided £9.3bn for the Games - up from an estimate of £2.4bn at the time of the bid in 2005.
Mr Hunt said: "You can take two attitudes to the Olympics. You can say: these are times of austerity and therefore we should pare them down as much as possible.'Positive impact'
"Or, you can say: because these are times of austerity we need to do everything we possibly can to harness the opportunity of the Olympics."
The minister said hosting the Olympics would have a "massively positive impact" on economic confidence.
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"We're going to be the centre of global attention and it will be the first time that we've had a major sporting event that's watched live by half the world's population.
"People would not forgive us if we didn't make the absolute most of this moment.
"This is going to be an incredible expression of Britain's culture, Britain's history and Britain's creativity.
"So, we decided that the sensible thing to do is to make sure that we finance it properly."
The government recently more than doubled the budget for the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic ceremonies - from £40m to £81m - after Prime Minister David Cameron saw the plans.
The extra money came from within the £9.3bn Olympic public funding package.
The venue security allocation has also risen by £271m to £553m after the estimated number of security guards required more than doubled from 10,000 to 23,700.