Government approves Olympic law for Milan-Cortina 2026 and backs ATP Finals in Turin
The Italian government has approved the Olympic law putting in place legislation for the hosting of the 2026 Winter Olympic Games in Milan and Cortina d’Ampezzo.
On Thursday evening, the Council of Minister approved the decree, which covers the Winter Olympics and tennis’ end-of-season ATP Finals, which will take place in Turin from 2021 to 2025.
The law includes various articles pertaining to the staging of both events.
Milan-Cortina 2026 will be the first Olympics to take place in Italy since the Turin 2006 winter games as the country looks to reassert itself as the host of major international sports events, after Rome withdrew from the bidding for the 2020 and 2024 summer games.
Vincenzo Spadafora (pictured), the Italian youth and sports minister, said on Twitter: “Happy for the approval of the CDM for the decree for the Milan-Cortina Olympics and the ATP Finals Turin, the result of a choral effort carried out with particular attention to the territories. Our country knows how to demonstrate great skills in important events."
Milan-Cortina was elected host of the games last June, beating Stockholm-Åre in Sweden by 47 votes to 34.
Spadafora claimed that the Olympic law had been one of his priorities since he took up his present role last September when the new government took office.
The local organising committee for Milan-Cortina was instituted at the end of last year, and the first visit of the International Olympic Committee’s coordination commission will be in September 2020.
Spadafora told reporters: “Italy is a solid and structured country, which, in the most important and delicate events, pays particular attention to the territories and local communities. This also applies to the very important event of the ATP Finals in Turin. It mobilises the best energies, showing great skills.
“The government could and should give concrete and effective answers, long awaited at national and international level. We are already working to continue on the path outlined and preparing the further necessary standards, which, by their nature, will follow the ordinary legislative process, and will allow Parliament to improve and enrich the efforts already made by the government.”
The Milano Cortina 2026 Foundation was established in December by founding members including Giuseppe Sala, the mayor of Milan, Gianpietro Ghedina, the mayor of Cortina, Attilio Fontana, the president of the Lombardy region, Luca Zaia, the president of the Veneto region, Giovanni Malago, the president of CONI, the Italian national Olympic Committee, and Luca Pancalli, the president of the CIP, the Italian Paralympic Committee.
The board of directors comprises 22 members, including 10 from the world of sport, 10 from the territories involved in the organisation of Milan-Cortina 2026, a representative of the Italian government and Malago, as president of the foundation.
Welcoming the Olympic law, Fontana said: “We have taken another step forward. Now we should try, during the parliamentary approval, to make some additions to be able, in compliance with the rules, to make the procedures more streamlined so as to do not slow down the operation.”
He added: “As for the economic and financial issues. I am not worried. The CEO has already started to make contact with possible sponsors. Instead I am worried about the works to be carried out. We must hurry. We cannot waste time. You have to move quickly to not get to the deadline by a breath.”
Turin won a competitive tender to win the hosting rights to the ATP Finals, and will replace London in 2021, staging the event at the Pala Alpitour, Italy’s largest indoor sporting arena.