Sweden makes bid for 2022 Winter Olympics

Sweden makes bid for 2022 Winter Olympics
Sweden has officially declared its interest in staging the 2022 Winter Olympics in Stockholm after lodging a formal bid to bring Olympic sport back to the country for the first time since 1912.

The bid, which has been mooted for a while, is at a preliminary stage and it's understood that an official bid won't be lodged with the International Olympic Committee until next March.

In a joint statement issued by members of the Swedish Olympic, Paralympic and the Swedish sports federation they said that a successful bid was only possible if it was "economically feasible."

"We could give the world an exciting, innovative project that is both spectacular and be a unique way to bring winter sports into a big city," said the Swedish Olympic Committee in the joint statement.

Concerns over the funding have been alleviated after Sweden conducted an independent report which revealed that hosting the games was viable.

A budget of 9.79 billion kronor ($1.5 billion) is what investigator Jöran Hägglund told the Swedish Olympic Committee (SOK) the games would cost, the Expressen newspaper reported.

"It (the report) showed that the possibilities are very good financially, technically and in terms of snow to stage the Games without state funding," added the SOK in the statement.

Under IOC rules a certain level of government involvement is required for any country that hosts an Olympic games in order to cover costs if the budget overruns.

"It must be economically feasible and does not take resources away from other important areas of society,"  the SOK wrote.

If Stockholm does get the green light to host the games the vast majority of sports events will be held in the capital. The alpine skiing events would be held further north in Åre, 610 kilometres away from Stockholm.

Sweden hosted the 1912 summer Olympics in Stockholm and has bid for numerous winter games since without success. The new bid pits the capital against Nordic rivals Oslo which threw its hat into the ring last week.

A decision as to who hosts the 2022 Olympic Games will be made on July 31st next year in Kuala Lumpur. 

The Local/pr

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