Wales were initially hoping to host the Commonwealth Games for the first time since 1958 ©Getty Images

Welsh Government representatives were warned that the economic benefits of hosting the Commonwealth Games "may have been zero" before abandoning their bid for the 2026 edition, a new report has revealed.

According to the 2026 Commonwealth Games Feasibility Study, which was published in full following a Freedom of Information request by BBC Wales, chief economist Jonathan Price warned "that the potential economic benefits of holding a Commonwealth Games in Wales would unlikely [be] large and may even be zero".

The study concluded that "in the longer term there is little evidence that the Games would have a positive impact on the wider economy.

"The primary source of economic return would result from investment in infrastructure that could be brought forward."

It did, however, claim "there may be major non-economic reasons for holding the Games, so this does not imply that no case can be made for bidding".

Wales scrapped their potential bid after the country’s Government ruled that the cost of hosting and the financial uncertainty created by Brexit made it "difficult to justify".

A potential bid had received cross-party support from British Members of Parliament during a debate in the House of Commons in Westminster during March.

MPs and key officials involved in the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games then held a meeting to establish what was needed to launch a successful bid.

An economic study was commissioned following the success of the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow two years ago, but Wales' First Minister Carwyn Jones warned the cost was "too prohibitive" because the British Government would not provide any financial support.

A Wales 2026 Feasibility Study has been published following a freedom of information request ©Welsh Government
A Wales 2026 Feasibility Study has been published following a freedom of information request ©Welsh Government

The latest report estimates between 9,000 and 17,000 jobs could be created as a result of the Games over a period of 10 years,.

It predicted a potential contribution of £870 million ($1 billion/€965 million) in gross terms to Wales' economy.

Full details of the bid had not been confirmed, although it had been likely to make use of facilities across the country rather than focus on one particular city.

A Games focusing on south-east Wales was recommended as the strongest option.

Even this was described as the "limit of acceptability".

Birmingham and Liverpool are each hoping to mount an English bid for the 2026 edition.

Edmonton in Canada is also considering mounting an attempt and are due to make a decision by the end of the year. 

Auckland in New Zealand and Port Moresby in Papua New Guinea have also been mentioned as possible other contenders.

Durban were awarded the 2022 Commonwealth Games but face having the event taken away from them following their failure to meet a series of deadlines.

The full report can be read here