Queensland could take a big step toward hosting the 2032 Olympic Games this week when a proposal for a preferred bidder is presented to the International Olympic Committee.
The IOC’s board of directors is expected to meet on Wednesday night (AEDT), when they hear a presentation from their new Hospitality Commission in the future.
If, as might be expected, the Commission proposes a south-east Queensland bid, more detailed discussions can begin between the IOC and Australian officials with a view to being determined as the preferred host candidate at the IOC session. this year.
Under normal circumstances, that would happen just before the Tokyo Games, starting in July this year, but Covid-19 has put down times and there may be a delay in the scheduled meeting.
But with the IOC’s new application process, once submitted, the best hosting applicant would be in a strong position to earn rights to host the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
“Announcing the IOC as confirmed is another step in the process – positive – but just another step,” a Queensland government spokesman told the Australian Guardian.
The Australian Olympic Committee said it would stay to hear about any developments overnight from the remote meeting before responding.
“We are aware that the IOC’s board of directors will receive presentations from a number of commissions at their meeting tonight [Wednesday], including a future Host Commission, ”an AOC spokesperson said.
“We are not committed to that show but we look forward to any advice in due course. ”
The process of choosing a host city has been reformed – previously outsourced and costly, often open to allegations of unfairness and a simpler approach is being used for 2032 Games.
The changes agreed in 2019 allow, according to the IOC, “more flexibility and co-operation on a bilateral level”.
Interested parties are no longer limited to a single city but can refer to a multiple city, region or country, and strict deadlines for previous applications have been waived.
Instead of competing directly with the winner announced seven years before the games, entrants will now engage in “permanent, ongoing communication” with the IOC, in the effort to examine applications and to avoid unnecessary costs.
Under the new system, it is hoped that ongoing, non-complaint discussions between the IOC and any prospective guests will develop and develop, and will also encourage future applications if they do not. successful at first.
The IOC has heard from a number of potential bidding towns for 2032, but following a feasibility study submitted in early 2019 it is believed that the southeast Queensland bid – into Brisbane, the Gold Coast and the Sun Coast – strong.
The Gold Coast was a success at the 2018 Commonwealth Games and already has most of the infrastructure in place; the state government claims that 80% of the venues for the games have already been built, although it appears that a major athletics stadium needs to be built from scratch, or it could be the updated QE II stadium in Brisbane.
The claim, which Annastacia Palaszczuk, the state’s chief executive, said was “to be the biggest thing ever to happen in Queensland”, was slammed last year when a Covid-19 pandemic contracted on it, but it has since been resurrected.
Other cities and regions that have expressed interest in hosting the 2032 Games include 2022 hosting the Fifa Doha World Cup, Budapest, the Rhine-Ruhr area of Germany, Chengdu and Chongqing China, Istanbul, New Delhi and Saint Petersburg.
A fanciful joint bid between North and South Korea has also been proposed.