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IOC seeks simpler and more honest requirements for Olympic Games bidding cities — expert

November 07, 2014, 20:24 UTC+3 BANGKOK
Bidding cities often fill out the IOC questionnaire, not describing the real state of affairs but only to please the IOC, a member of the Association of National Olympic Committees says
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© ITAR-TASS/EPA/LARRY W. SMITH

BANGKOK, November 7. /TASS/. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) plans to adopt next month a new set of regulations concerning requirements for cities wishing to host the Games making the bidding procedure simpler and more honest, Alexander Kozlovsky, a member of the Association of National Olympic Committees, said on Friday.

Kozlovsky, who is also the honorary vice president of the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC), was attending on Friday the session of the ANOC General Assembly, held at Bangkok’s Centara Convention Center and attended by IOC President Thomas Bach.

“The decades-long question is about the procedure of selecting hosting cities for the Olympic Games,” Kozlovsky said in an interview with TASS. “After speaking with IOC President Thomas Bach, I understood his intentions and completely share his point of view. He has been with the IOC Evaluation Commission on many occasions and therefore knows the issue very well.”

“The thing is that bidding cities often fill out the IOC questionnaire, which holds up to 500 questions, not describing the real state of affairs but only to please the IOC,” Kozlovsky said. “By changing this system the IOC wants, to put it in simple terms, not to be cheated anymore.”

“The way it is now is as soon a city signs an agreement for hosting the Games it introduces amendments the very next day. Even Tokyo, which a year ago in Buenos Aires was granted the right for hosting the 2020 Summer Olympics, have already introduced a lot of changes,” Kozlovsky said.

The ROC official added that Bach also wanted to make the Olympics more affordable for hosting cities and had several proposals in this regard.

“As far as I understand, Bach even considers an idea of granting the right for hosting the Games by means of negotiations only. We will see what comes out of it,” Kozlovsky said.

Addressing the session of the ANOC General Assembly on Friday Bach called on the world’s sports leaders to start taking action concerning reformation of the IOC.

Bach, who was elected the IOC president in Argentina in the fall of 2013, worked for almost a year on his 40-point plan to reform the IOC in a bid to run Olympic Games more effectively.

"We have been discussing for one year,” Bach said addressing the session. “Now is the time for agreeing on something.”

The IOC president said the details of his plan to overhaul the Olympics will be revealed this month before the voting takes place in Monaco on December 8 at the IOC’s end-of-year session.

"If we want to preserve our values, we have to move. If we stand still we are falling behind,” he added.

According to Reuters, Bach in particular proposes to make the Games not only more attractive but affordable for bidding cities as well. The issue of affordability was recently in the limelight after four out of the six bidding cities for the 2022 Winter Olympics pulled out from the competition leaving only China’s Beijing and Kazakhstan’s Almaty.

ANOC’s Executive Committee already studied proposals from Bach and granted its support for the IOC president’s plan.

"We unanimously support all the recommendations made by the IOC Executive Board," ANOC President Sheikh Ahmad Al Fahad Al Sabah, who was re-elected to his post on Friday, said.

The 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Russia’s Sochi were the first for Bach in the capacity of the IOC president, after he replaced Jacques Rogge in this post in September of 2013.

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