The 2023 55th International Children's Games (ICG) was held in Daegu, South Korea from July 5th to 10th. In conjunction with cities in Taiwan, the Sports Administration promoted sports diplomacy through participating in the Games. Taipei City, New Taipei City, and Hualien County all formed teams to participate in this international sports event for children.
After several days of competition and experience exchanges, the athletes from each city in Taiwan performed outstandingly, bagging a total of 22 golds, 13 silvers, and 12 bronzes, also winning glory and friendship for Taiwan on the international stage.
The ICG is an international sports organization recognized by the International Olympic Committee (IOC). The event is held every year for young people aged between 12 and 15. Cities are the participating units and, to date, 55 editions of the ICG have been held. This year, 27 countries, with more than 60 cities and 2,000 people participated.
The eight sports featured were track and field, swimming, football, tennis, table tennis, volleyball, taekwondo, and 3×3 basketball. This time, teams from Taiwan participated in all the sports except for volleyball.
As well as competing in the ICG this year, Chang Fen-fen, Secretary of Taiwan’s Presidential Office, and Hsu Hsiu-ling, Chief of the International and Cross-Strait Sports Division of the Sports Administration, attended important ICG organizational meetings as Executive Committee member and committee member, respectively, gaining an in-depth understanding of the latest developments of the organization.
They were also invited to participate in Daegu ICG important ceremonial activities, with Hsu appointed by the ICG to serve as the supervisor of the billiards competition technical committee. Clearly, Taiwan is now highly affirmed after actively participating in the ICG for many years.
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The Sports Administration attaches great importance to the ICG organization and participation in its activities. It actively supports the forming of teams by the governments of counties and cities to participate every year.
This year is the first ICG in Asia after the pandemic. It will be held in León, Mexico, in 2024 and, in 2025, it will be held in Eilat, Israel. Hualien County plans to bid for the 2026 ICG and submitted a letter of intent this time. ICG members will visit Taiwan in March next year.
Sports diplomacy is actively promoted by the Sports Administration. Through the ICG, the international vision of Taiwan’s children and adolescents will be enhanced, their opportunities to communicate with athletes from other countries increased, and they will be provided with a chance to experience culture from different countries.
Another benefit is that the ICG raises the profile of cities taking part. In the future, the Sports Administration will continue to assist county and city governments forms team to participate in the Games to jointly expand Taiwan's participation and influence in the ICG.