Sports / China

Beijing's bid to host 2022 Winter Olympics enters final lap

By Sun Xiaochen ( Updated: 2015-07-30 17:20

Beijing's bid to host 2022 Winter Olympics enters final lap

Yao Ming, retired Chinese professional basketball player, smiles during a press conference for Beijing 2022 Olympic bid in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Wednesday, July 29, 2015. [Photo/IC]

Beijing is set to demonstrate its strengths to host the 2022 Winter Olympics with an all-star team of presenters taking their marks to show the world its ability to stage the sports gala.

With the host city of the 2022 Winter Olympics and Paralympic Games to be selected between Beijing and Almaty, Kazakhstan on Friday, the Beijing 2022 bid committee has assembled a glittering 12-member squad led by Vice-Premier Liu Yandong to address International Olympic Committee members about Beijing's concepts and strengths.

The presenters' team also includes Beijing Mayor Wang Anshun, star bid ambassador Yao Ming and IOC member Yang Yang, who will stake their claim during the 55-minute session at 12 noon.

The Almaty delegation will make its presentation before Beijing and the eventual host city will be announced at 6:55pm after a closed-door vote of IOC members.

Aiming to promote winter sports in the world's most populous country, Beijing's joint bid with Zhangjiakou in Hebei province will contribute to the Olympic Movement significantly if successful, said head of the bid committee Wang.

"We believe Beijing 2022 is the right partner for the IOC at this crucial time of transformation, playing our part to support the Olympic Agenda 2020 principles that are setting the foundation for the Olympic Movement to continue to grow sustainably to 2022 and beyond," he said on Thursday.

Thanks to the promotion of China's national image as a world power during the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics, Beijing's attempt to become the first city to host both the summer and winter Games also received strong government backing this time around.

During her meeting with Malaysia's Prime Minister Najib Razak in Kuala Lumpur on Thursday, Liu voiced strong support for Beijing's bid from the Chinese government.

Bidding for the Winter Games will stimulate grassroots participation in winter sports in China while helping achieve the goal of mass fitness and health as well as pushing forward the International Olympic Movement, said Liu.

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