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Beijing bids on experience, facilities to host Olympics

By Sun Xiaochen ( China Daily ) Updated: 2015-07-06 07:28:29

Boasting existing facilities and strong domestic support, Beijing will offer assured delivery as well as unique cultural experiences for participants if the capital wins the bid for the 2022 Winter Olympics.

"If the International Olympic Committee and the entire Olympic family select Beijing, they select safety and guarantees. Beijing is a zero-risk candidate to host the 2022 Games," Wang Hui, deputy secretary-general and spokeswoman for the Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Games Bid Committee, said recently during a media event.

Beijing, with co-host city Zhangjiakou in surrounding Hebei province, is vying with Almaty in Kazakhstan to host the 2022 Olympics. The winning city will be announced on July 31 at the 128th IOC Session in Kuala Lumpur.

Wang Anshun, president of the Beijing 2022 bid committee and mayor of Beijing, pledged following a visit by the IOC Evaluation Commission that Beijing is on the right track to convince IOC members that the city is the right choice for a successful Games in 2022.

According to Beijing's bid plan, the 2022 Games would take advantage of existing venues, including the Water Cube, the National Stadium and National Indoor Stadium, as well as the MasterCard Center, which have been in constant operation since 2008.

A complete set of accommodation, catering and commercial services as well as convenient public transportation systems around the venue cluster and the proposed 2022 Olympic Village in north Beijing have been tested by holding a series of international events.

The IOC bid evaluation report, which was published in June, underlined that Beijing has key elements in place to host a highly successful Winter Olympics, thanks to its legacies of experience and facilities gained from the 2008 Summer Olympics.

The report also cited other strengths of the city's bid, including full government support and high public support, delivery certainty boasting strong financial guarantees and marketing potential.

According to a survey conducted by Ipsos, a global market research company, 94.8 percent of respondents support Beijing's bid for the 2022 Winter Olympics.

The nationwide celebration of Olympic Day, which saw thousands of people participate in Olympic-themed promotional activities in Beijing and Zhangjiakou on June 23, illustrated the country's passion for the Olympic Movement.

"The strong government and public support of our bid provides us with confidence to win the bid to be host," Wang Hui said.

Beijing bids on experience, facilities to host Olympics

Beijing's rich culture and tradition is another plus for international participants.

According to the bid plan, the purpose-built Nordic and Biathlon Center in Zhangjiakou and the Alpine Ski Center in northwest Beijing's Yanqing county, which will host events including the Nordic combined, cross-country skiing and Alpine ski, will be set at the foot of the Great Wall and provide a stunning backdrop for spectators and millions of fans.

The Spring Festival of 2022, Chinese Lunar New Year, will fall during the proposed 2022 Olympics period from Feb 4 to 20, increasing the celebratory atmosphere with traditional Chinese foods, festival activities and folk customs to entertain athletes and guests.

"Beijing 2022 offers the chance to stage the world's greatest winter sports event against a backdrop of spectacular Chinese landscape and culture," Wang Hui said. "The Olympic spirit and the time honored Chinese history as well as culture will enhance each other."

Robert Livingstone, the founder of GamesBids.com who visited Beijing and Zhangjiakou in March, said he was impressed by the cultural elements in Beijing's bid.

"I like the idea with the events being staged next to the Great Wall. That will be interesting for the television viewers and the athletes to see," said Livingstone, who is a member of the Olympic Journalists Association and the International Society of Olympic Historians.

sunxiaochen@chinadaily.com.cn

 Beijing bids on experience, facilities to host Olympics

A delegation from the IOC Evaluation Commission visits the National Stadium in March. Feng Yongbin / China Daily

(China Daily 07/06/2015 page7)

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