MOSCOW, April 19. /’TASS/. The 2016 IIHF (International Ice Hockey Federation) World Championship will cost Russia $25 million, Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko said on Tuesday.
The Russian sports minister spoke at an enlarged session of the Committee for Social Policy in the Federation Council, the upper house of Russia’s parliament.
"I know that the price of tickets has been criticized. The cost of the championship is $25 million. Tickets are the sole thing that can help us return the money," the sports minister said.
The matches of the 2016 IIHF World Championship are scheduled to be held in the country’s capital of Moscow and in Russia’s second largest city of St. Petersburg between May 6 and 22. The games of the global ice hockey tournament will be hosted by the VTB Ice Palace in Moscow and the Yubileny Arena in St. Petersburg.
A total of 16 national teams, qualified to play in the upcoming 2016 IIHF World Championship, were divided into two groups. The 12,000-seat VTB Ice Palace in Moscow will host the matches of Group A, which comprise the teams from Russia, Sweden, the Czech Republic, Switzerland, Latvia, Norway, Denmark and Kazakhstan.
The 6,000-seat Yubileny Arena will see the matches of Group B teams, which are from Canada, Finland, the United States, Slovakia, Belarus, France, Germany and Hungary.
During the knock-out stage the stadiums in Moscow and St. Petersburg will each host two matches of the quarterfinals round, while both semifinals, the match for the third place and the final are scheduled to be held at the VTB Ice Palace in Moscow.
This will be the 7th IIHF World Championship held in Russia as it was hosted by Moscow five times, namely in 1957, 1973, 1979, 1986 and 2007, and once by St. Petersburg in 2000.