AOC Insists Opportunity Knocks for Australia’s 2032 Olympic Bid

AOC Insists Opportunity Knocks for Australia’s 2032 Olympic Bid

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Australia should know whether it is hosting another Olympic Games by 2022, with John Coates urging governments to supercharge the 2032 bid with an economic blitz on the way out of the COVID-19 downturn.

The Australian Olympic Committee president told the annual general meeting on Saturday that the economic stall caused by the coronavirus should be seen as an opportunity for the 2032 bid to regather some steam by the Queensland and federal governments.

A South East Queensland bid, with Brisbane at its heart but venues throughout the region, remains the leading contender for 2032 and Coates said the chance had arrived to add the transport infrastructure needed to ensure the region could handle the influx of athletes and visitors.

Under the revised bidding process, Coates said there was “continuous dialogue” with the IOC’s Future Host Commission, which tracks the progress of bidding cities and updates them along the way, rather than a grand reveal after a vote.

The AOC has backed the Brisbane bid under the caveat that transport links are upgraded, which was already needed in the rapidly growing region.

“This is the opportunity. We always were going to be using existing venues, largely, so it depended on getting the improved rail and infrastructure. Now there is a real need for that road and rail investment to turn the economy around,” Coates said.

Coates says there is no 'Plan B'
 

@AUSOlympicTeam President John Coates has emphatically said everything is going to plan for the Tokyo 2020 Oympics in 2021. #Olympics

“My discussions, certainly at a federal level last week, indicated that. We have stepped back for the moment, there are other priorities at the moment. It was hardly the right time to be pushing it but in the meantime, we’ve been doing the masterplanning, location of the venues, and when they are ready we will elevate the discussion with the IOC.”

Turning to future “opportunity”, Coates told the meeting, which was held online, that the proposal for Australia to host the summer Olympics for the third time in 2032 was gathering pace.

Coates told the AGM that the goals for the economy and Games bid were aligned and that a decision could be made by 2022, giving the state a decade to prepare the way for what would be Australia’s first Games in 32 years.

“I have always believed in making necessity a virtue. There is already a need for jobs and growth in the Queensland economy arising from the impact of COVID-19,” he told the meeting.

“Our (government partners) recognise a potential 2032 … Games as a critical part of the state and nation’s economic recovery in the short term, quite apart from all of the long-term health, well-being, economic and sporting legacies.”

Source: The Brisbane Times

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