Salt Lake City moves forward with Winter Olympics bid preparations
Salt Lake City and the state of Utah in USA have set up a joint committee to prepare a bid for the 2030 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Utah governor Gary Herbert and Salt Lake City mayor Erin Mendenhall launched the Salt Lake City-Utah Committee for the Games yesterday in the latest step to bring the Olympics back to the region for the first time since Salt Lake City staged the 2002 Winter Olympics.
Herbert said: “This committee is an important next step for Utah, as the state of sport, to show that we continue to be ready, willing and able to play host to a future Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.
Mendenhall added: “In 2002 Salt Lake City took great pride in welcoming the world. We are ready to welcome the world again as a returning host of a future Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. I feel very strongly about our bid potential.”
Last month, the International Olympic Committee confirmed it is in talks with Salt Lake City, Barcelona and Sapporo over hosting future Winter Olympics.
However, it is thought that the US city could target the 2034 games instead of the 2030 edition if it feels this offers a better chance of success.
The formation of the committee comes after the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee named Salt Lake City as its choice for a future bid following a national selection process in December 2018.
The Chinese capital Beijing is due to host the 2022 Winter Olympics, and Milan and Cortina d’Ampezzo in Italy were awarded the 2026 games last year.
Meanwhile, Juan Antonio Samaranch, the Spanish vice-president of the International Olympic Committee, has said Barcelona would need to invest $1.6 billion if it wins the hosting rights to the 2030 Winter Olympics.
Speaking to the Equestrian Circle of Barcelona, Samaranch said this money would cover everything from infrastructure, including a new Olympic Village, to marketing.
In line with the IOC’s economic aid to host cities, Barcelona would receive more than $950 million, similar to what PyeongChang received in 2018, with other funding to come from worldwide and domestic sponsorship deals.
Samaranch said for a successful bid, Barcelona would have to set up a committee “that makes the IOC see that it is a serious project and that is above political changes. If we do not perceive that it has the backing of all parties, it will not be able to compete with Sapporo and Salt Lake.”
Meanwhile, the Ukrainian government is assessing a potential joint bid for the summer Olympics with Belarus, it has been reported.
Oleksiy Honcharuk, Ukraine’s prime minister, has given instructions to assess Belarus’ staging of the 2019 European Games in Minsk, and requested that plans be drawn up in line with the IOC’s bidding requirements, according to Ukrainian news agency RBC.
Speaking at a meeting of the organising committee for the preparation of Ukrainian athletes for this year's Olympics in Tokyo, Honcharuk said: “The idea deserves an in-depth study. The government is looking into the situation from different points of view and will put forward a concept to our partners if the initiative can be implemented in the new future. This is an important and responsible image-building step. Such large-scale projects contribute to the renewal of the country’s infrastructure, and strengthens its tourist appeal and national prestige worldwide.”
Last July, Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky announced his intention to bring a future Olympics to Ukraine, and in September his Belarus counterpart Aleksandr Lukashenko suggested his country could co-host the Olympics with either Ukraine or Russia.