But estimate does not factor in 18b yuan investment required for construction Shanghai expects to lose at least a billion yuan from hosting the World Expo in 2010 as the city puts national pride ahead of financial prudence. Announcing financial details for the first time yesterday, organisers said the projected shortfall did not take into account the 18 billion yuan in investment needed for construction and the cost of moving nearly 20,000 families from the expo site into new housing. But Shanghai might fare better than the German city of Hanover, which lost US$1 billion when it hosted the 2000 World Expo after visitor numbers fell 22 million short of the projected 40 million. Shanghai forecasts operating expenditure - including site maintenance, the opening and closing ceremonies and marketing - at 10.68 billion yuan. Operating revenue is forecast at 9.61 billion yuan, with income coming from ticket sales, sponsorship and rental of venues, according to a registration document submitted to the Bureau of International Expositions. To make up for any shortfall, Shanghai will turn to the central government for funding. Officials have played down concerns that the expo will not break even, saying the event will boost overall economic growth and the organisers said the city would 'do its best' to avoid overrunning the budget. Other cities which competed for, and lost, the rights to host the expo have complained that Shanghai can host the event without consideration of commercial principles because the government is willing to underwrite the cost. Funding of main construction projects for the Shanghai expo will come from the central and local governments, which will cover 40 per cent of the cost. The issuing of bonds and bank loans will fund the remaining construction expenses. Shanghai is hoping that 70 million people will visit the expo, which will run from May to October 2010. About 5 per cent, or 3.5 million people, will be overseas visitors, with the rest from the mainland. On peak days, up to 800,000 people could visit. Ticket prices have yet to be announced, but the organiser said it would take into account the 'actual situation of China', suggesting lower prices than other international events. The expo will sell several packages, including weekly, quarterly and night tickets. Planners already have removed a 'signature' landmark from the expo plan, but the site will include five main pavilions and a museum jointly organised with the Victoria & Albert Museum in London. Some of the structures at the expo site will be retained after the event, but the city will redevelop much of the area, which sits on prime real estate on both sides of the Huangpu River.