On the evening of 31 July 2015, the President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Thomas Bach announced that Beijing would be the host city of the Olympic Winter Games 2022.
This announcement was the culmination of a two-year process, which the IOC has developed over a number of years to ensure that the city that is elected is capable of hosting the Games and that the process is transparent for all involved. Olympic Agenda 2020, the IOC’s strategic roadmap for the future of the Olympic movement, was approved in December 2014 at the 127th IOC Session. This allowed a number of the recommendations for the Candidature Process to be incorporated into the process for the Olympic Winter Games 2022. These changes included cost savings to the Candidate Cities, an open dialogue with the Candidate Cities and an Evaluation Commission report focusing on the opportunities and challenges presented by each city.
Here is a brief recap of the 2022 process:
The IOC published the 2022 Candidature Acceptance Procedure in June 2013 and NOCs had until 14 November 2013 to submit their application to the IOC. On 15 November 2013 the IOC announced that six cities had been endorsed by their National Olympic Committees (NOCs) as 2022 Applicant Cities. These cities, in order of the drawing of lots, were: Stockholm* (Sweden), Krakow* (Poland), Oslo (Norway), Almaty (Kazakhstan), Lviv* (Ukraine) and Beijing (China).
*Stockholm, Krakow and Lviv withdrew during the first phase of the bid process
From 4 to 6 December 2013, Applicant Cities took part in the Applicant City Seminar in Lausanne. The Seminar, which draws from a wealth of knowledge from the IOC and previous host cities, is a valuable knowledge tool that walks the Applicant Cities through the bidding process and provides a comprehensive introduction to both the complexity, scope, scale, and opportunities and benefits of hosting an Olympic Games. The meetings gave the Applicant Cities a clearer understanding of what the Olympic product is and helps them create a long-term vision that best fits the needs of their city.
Phase I, known at the time as the Candidature Acceptance Procedure, involved a thorough review by the IOC of each city’s potential to organise the Olympic Winter Games 2022. Cities were asked to reply to a questionnaire, and their answers, which were consolidated in a document called the Application File, were studied by an IOC-appointed Working Group which included representatives of various Olympic stakeholders such as the International Federations (IFs), the National Olympic Committees and the IOC Athletes’ Commission. This Working Group produced a detailed risk assessment report to assist the IOC Executive Board in selecting the cities to become Candidate Cities and move on to Phase II.
Phase I: Timeline
14 November 2013: NOCs informed the IOC of the name of an Applicant City
4-6 December 2013: IOC information seminar for the Applicant Cities 2022
14 March 2014: Submission of the Application File and Guarantee letters
February 2014: Olympic Winter Games Observer Programme – Sochi 2014
March – June 2014: Examination of Application File by the IOC Working Group
7 July 2014: IOC Executive Board acceptance of Candidate Cities
On 7 July 2014, the IOC Executive Board selected Oslo*, Almaty and Beijing as Candidate Cities and they advanced to the second phase of the bid process.
*Oslo withdrew during the second phase of the bid process
The Candidate Cities were requested to answer the second-phase IOC questionnaire and submit much more detailed plans to the IOC in the form of a Candidature File (a city’s blueprint for the Olympic Games). The Candidature File, submitted on 6 January 2015, was accompanied by legally binding guarantee letters. The areas covered in the Candidature File range from the Olympic Village, athletes’ experience, legacy, transport, security and accommodation to sports and venues, the environment, marketing, engagement and many more.
The Candidature File and accompanying documents were analysed by an IOC Evaluation Commission which, like the Phase I Working Group, also included representatives of various Olympic stakeholders such as the IFs, NOCs and the IOC Athletes’ Commission, as well as the International Paralympic Committee (IPC). The Commission paid on-site visits to each city in February/March of 2015 and produced a report which was provided to all IOC members, highlighting the challenges and opportunities presented by each city’s project.
Phase II: Timeline
January 2015: Submission of Candidature File and Guarantees to the IOC
February / March 2015: IOC Evaluation Commission visits
May / June 2015: Report of the IOC Evaluation Commission 2022
9-10 June 2015: Candidate City Briefing to IOC Members and International Olympic Winter Federations
31 July 2015: Election of the Host City of the Olympic Winter Games 2022 at the 128th IOC Session, Kuala Lumpur
On 29 September 2014, President Bach announced the composition of the IOC Evaluation Commission for the Olympic Winter Games 2022. Led by IOC member Mr Alexander Zhukov, the Commission was composed of representatives of the Olympic Movement and a number of technical advisors. The Commission visited each of the Candidate Cities on the following dates:
Almaty: 14-18 February, 2015
Beijing: 24-28 March, 2015
Following these visits, the Commission produced the IOC Evaluation Commission report, a technical appraisal of each city’s bid which focused on the challenges and opportunities presented by each candidature. The report was made public and distributed to the IOC members prior to the 2022 Candidate City Briefing for IOC Members.
2022 Candidate City Briefing for IOC Members and International Olympic Winter Federations
A technical briefing for IOC members with the Candidate Cities was held in Lausanne from 9 – 10 June, 2015. This meeting gave the cities and the IOC members the opportunity to discuss the technical elements of their bids over a two-day period. This meeting involved a technical briefing from each city followed by a question and answer session, with a second day for members to ask any follow-up questions they had and view plans and models of each bid.
In line with Olympic Agenda 2020, and for the first time, the briefing included representation by all Olympic Winter International Federations, as well as a highly successful report and question and answer session by the Evaluation Commission, promoting free and open dialogue between the commission, the IFs and the IOC members.
128th IOC Session in Kuala Lumpur
The culmination of the candidature process was the meeting of the 128th IOC Session in Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia). On 31 July 2015, the cities each had 45 minutes to give a presentation to the Session, followed by 15 minutes for a question and answer session. The cities presented in the order of drawing of lots.
Following the presentations by the cities, the Chair of the Evaluation Commission, Mr Alexander Zhukov, addressed the Session. The IOC members then voted and took the important decision of electing the 2022 host city, which was announced by the IOC President at the Announcement Ceremony. Following this, the newly elected NOC and city signed the Host City Contract.
The Vote Regulations
The eligible IOC members are asked to vote. In each round every participating IOC member may vote for only one city. As per the voting regulations, only those IOC members who are not nationals of countries for which there is a Candidate City in a round are permitted to vote. The votes of members not taking part in a round of voting or who abstain, as well as invalid electronic voting entries, are not taken into account in the calculation of the required majority. If, after the first round of voting, no city obtains the absolute majority of the votes cast, as many rounds are held as necessary for a city to obtain such majority. The city receiving the least number of votes leaves the competition. The name of this city is made public straight away and the vote continues. If only two cities remain in contention, the one that obtains the greatest number of votes is elected.
Almaty: 40 / Beijing: 44
Olympic Agenda 2020
Olympic Agenda 2020 is a strategic roadmap for the future of the Olympic Movement culminating in the adoption of 40 recommendations in December 2014.