IOC greenlights Pyrenees-Barcelona winter olympics bid
International Olympic Committee approves Catalonia's candidacy to host the major international event in 2030
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has given the green light for Catalonia to begin preparing its bid to host the Winter Olympics in 2030 in the Catalan Pyrenees and Barcelona.
The IOC approved the Pirineus-Barcelona bid at the beginning of this week, following a glowing report by its consultant, Gilbert Felli, who visited Catalonia for three days last month.
With the bid approved, the next step is to begin drawing up the details of the candidacy once it has been confirmed that the infrastructure is sufficient to host the major international event.
It is the first time that the IOC has approved a bid before formal talks with the local authorities have even begun to take place.
In a statement, the IOC said the aim now is "to come up with a more detailed technical proposal that confirms Felli's good impressions."
Government welcomes bid approval
The Catalan government's head of sport, Gerard Figueras, expressed his satisfaction at the news, saying "the potential of our bid suits what is demanded by the new candidacy process; that the Games adapt to the territory and not the territory to the Games."
Meanwhile, the head of the Spanish Olympic Committee, Alejandro Blanco, pointed out that the IOC "would not accept any proposal that does not provide a business opportunity for the organizers."
Once a candidacy has been chosen, the city or region hosting the event receives more than 900 million euros, as well as support from the IOC to help organize the Games.