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  • Italian President Backs 2026 Bid


    03/12/19

    (ATR) The joint Milan-Cortina bid for the 2026 Olympics receives the strongest backing yet from the Italian federal government.

    Cortina d'Ampezzo would host alpine skiing in 2026 (ATR)
    Italian President Sergio Mattarella promised the “utmost support” for the bid in comments reported by ANSA.

    “I assure all the support and backing possible,” Mattarella said, adding that the Winter Games “have great importance, not only for the two host cities but also for the whole of Italy”.

    Matterella’s comments came a day after the Italian Deputy Prime Minister and Interior Minister Matteo Salvini called for the government to find the money to host the 2026 Olympics, saying it was “an exceptional opportunity” to showcase Italy and the host regions.

    The federal government has yet to finalize any financial guarantees for Milan-Cortina though it did approve the bid on January 10, a day before the deadline to turn in candidature files to the IOC.

    In November, the IOC gave its approval for the Milan-Cortina bid to move forward without financial support from the Italian federal government, saying the funding from the regional governments of Lombardy and Veneto was enough. A week later, Salvini said the federal government would “make the final push” to pay any remaining costs not already covered by other means.

    The only other 2026 candidate, Stockholm-Are, is also waiting for government guarantees. Neither bid faces the threat of a public vote, which has been the undoing of four failed 2026 bids.

    The IOC 2026 Evaluation Commission is in Sweden this week and will be visiting Milan-Cortina from April 2-6.

    The Commission’s report will be made public ahead of the host city election, which will take place on June 24 during the 134th IOC Session in Lausanne.

    Written by Gerard Farek

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