The Olympics will return to Australia for the third time after Brisbane formally obtained host rights for the 2032 Games following a vote by the member nations of the International Olympic Committee in Tokyo.
With the Australian city being the only candidate city still running and strongly supported by the IOC Commission for Future Hosts, Wednesday’s decision was a foregone conclusion.
Still, the bid team, led by Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, Federal Sports Minister Richard Colbeck and Brisbane Mayor Adrian Schrinner, traveled from Australia to present their case in person.
Palaszczuk told the session that Queensland will offer the Olympic movement “a safe pair of hands.” “We are committed to creating a successful model under its new host city strategy by displaying a cost-neutral, climate-positive, safe … and exciting experience for everyone,” he said.
Earlier Wednesday, IOC communications director Mark Adams had tried to downplay the certainty surrounding the offer. “This is not a done deal because it is still up to the session to decide,” he said. “They can decide to put the issue back in the pot; there are still several interested cities.”
But with the celebratory fireworks scheduled in Brisbane, no late drama was expected and the members ratified the decision during the IOC session at a luxurious hotel in central Tokyo.
The 2032 Olympics, the third to be held in Australia after Melbourne in 1956 and Sydney in 2000, are estimated to cost $ 5 billion. Most of this is expected to be recovered through ticket revenue, national sponsorship, and broadcast rights.
The bid has predicted that the Games will bring $ 17 billion in economic benefits, although the Olympic movement is famous for its high expectations that economic reality cannot match.
“My government is proud to support this opportunity for Brisbane and South East Queensland,” Prime Minister Scott Morrison said while presenting his case via video link from Australia. “The Australian and Queensland governments are fully funding the infrastructure projects to be delivered in preparation for the Games, ensuring they are delivered by Brisbane 2032, but also leave a lasting legacy.”
Brisbane will also host the Paralympic Games, Australia’s second time to do so – the first Paralympic Games were held in Rome in 1960.
“Our vision and plans are ambitious, as they should be,” Australian Paralympic Games President Jock O’Callaghan said in a statement. “We will be guided by a relentless focus on inclusion, diversity and accessibility and guided by the Paralympic ideals of determination, equality, inspiration and courage.”
Brisbane’s successful bid comes amid a period of turmoil for the IOC. The Swiss-based international sports body has drawn sustained criticism for its approach to the Tokyo 2020 Games, which began on Wednesday with softball games and officially begin at Friday’s opening ceremony.
The IOC has moved forward with its plans for this month’s Games, more than a year after it was postponed as a result of Covid-19, in the face of widespread national opposition. Polls suggest that around 80% of the Japanese population wants the Olympics canceled.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism