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Only in the running, Brisbane won the organization of the 2032 Summer Olympics on Wednesday, allowing the Olympic world to prepare for the future two days before the opening of the Tokyo Games, troubled by the additional costs and the pandemic.
The suspense was thin. Meeting in Tokyo for their 138th session, the members of the IOC elected Brisbane the host city of the 2032 Summer Olympics. The Australian city will therefore succeed Paris, host of the 2024 Olympics, and Los Angeles, which will host the event in 2028. .
Never has the biggest sporting event in the world been entrusted without a competition, eleven years in advance, while the fight between candidate countries has punctuated Olympic life for decades.
But the capital of Queensland has launched a new procedure, introduced in June 2019, making it possible to secure the organization of the Games despite the scarcity of candidates: at any time, the IOC can now initiate a “targeted dialogue” with a city whose file appears sufficiently attractive – which amounts to marking the route to its official designation.
Goodbye costly backstage lobbying, vote buying scandals like at the 2002 Olympic Games in Salt Lake City, delegations holding their breath, then hugs or tears broadcast around the world.
“Irresistible” project of the capital of Queensland
Aided by the influence of Australian IOC Vice-President John Coates, Brisbane had been on track since February to secure the 35th Summer Games, despite Qatar’s Olympic ambition, then North Korea’s joint bid. and South Korea. None of these files was put to the vote of the session.
In June, IOC boss Thomas Bach had further praised the “irresistible” project of the capital of Queensland and the “love” of Australians for “their sports and their athletes”, as well as their ability “to encourage sportsmen of the world. the whole world and welcome them “.
This fervor was noticeable from the 1956 Olympic Games in Melbourne, then during those in Sydney in 2000 which remain considered one of the most successful Olympic editions. And if the Games are above all a gigantic televised event, the local reception colors the atmosphere – the Rio 2016 Olympics were disappointed by their sparse and sometimes hostile stands.
Australia, a rare country to have never missed an edition of the Summer Games, is also “a huge Olympic village” with its multiple nationalities, ethnic origins and around 300 languages spoken, Prime Minister Scott Morrison argued on Wednesday. , by videoconference.
Already a candidate for the 1992 Olympics finally awarded to Barcelona, organizer in 2018 of the Commonwealth Games, the Queensland region also promises “84% of existing and temporary sites”, a key criterion since the Olympic body began its elephant hunt white.
Existing infrastructure and budget of 2.8 billion euros
Its designation also endorses the traditional continental rotation organized by the IOC, after Asia this year, then Paris-2024 and Los Angeles-2028. Africa is still waiting for its first Olympic Games.
The metropolis of 2.3 million inhabitants hopes that the Games will generate a net gain in international notoriety, while it remains considered by many tourists as a simple gateway to the Great Barrier Reef.
“Everywhere I have traveled, people ask me ‘Where is Brisbane?’, And you have to pull out a map to show them that it is an hour from Sydney by plane,” said the president of the Queensland Olympic Council. , Natalie Cook. “It’s going to change, and that’s very exciting.”
His case provides for a budget of 4.5 billion Australian dollars (2.8 billion euros), justified by the existing infrastructure and very much lower than the 13 billion euros spent for the Tokyo Olympics.
Millicent Kennelly, lecturer in tourism and sport at Griffith University (Brisbane), however, believes AFP that these forecasts must be “taken with a grain of salt”, given the recurring difficulty of the organizers to maintain budgets in nails.