IOC pledges to continue momentum beyond PyeongChang

The first day of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Executive Board meeting concluded with a presentation on the success of the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018.  

PyeongChang 2018 Getty Images

The discussion began with reflections on the historic moment when the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) and the Republic of Korea marched together as one team at the PyeongChang Opening Ceremony.

As IOC President Bach recently said in his op-ed: “Such moments of hope are rare in our increasingly polarised world. Indeed, it was only a few months ago that political tensions were escalating rapidly and even military confrontation on the Korean Peninsula looked likely. It was this dramatic crisis situation of missile launches, nuclear tests and bellicose rhetoric that the world and the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018 were facing in the autumn of 2017. To explain the easing of these tensions, it is useful to consider the role of the Olympic Games in this positive development.”

PyeongChang 2018 Getty Images

The IOC remains committed to ensuring that this momentum is carried forward beyond the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018. The IOC’s National Olympic Committee (NOC) Relations Department is producing a plan that will assist the NOC of the DPRK in identifying the appropriate sporting level of competition for athletes, as well as providing equipment and support to coaches.

Such moments of hope are rare in our increasingly polarised world. Thomas Bach IOC President

The IOC is already working with various stakeholders to provide support. It has helped to send a team of 12 DPRK athletes to the ongoing Table Tennis World Championship events in Sweden.

The PyeongChang Organising Committee (POCOG) announced a balanced budget of USD 2.4 billion, which included an additional USD 400 million in costs that are not normally considered as an Organising Committee’s budget responsibility. Due to POCOG’s successful revenue and marketing programme, PyeongChang 2018 delivered the Games in line with its USD 2 billion bid budget. Moreover, POCOG President Lee has previously referenced the possibility of a surplus when the books are officially closed.

Executive Board Lausanne IOC/Greg Martin

PyeongChang 2018 also set records in terms of participation, with more NOCs taking part and more female athletes competing than ever before. A record 91 NOCs plus the Olympic Athlete from Russia delegation participated in PyeongChang, while six NOCs competed for the first time, resulting in more than 2,930 athletes competing in the Games. Of those athletes, an estimated 42 per cent were female. A total of 268 athletes from 60 NOCs were supported by Olympic Solidarity scholarships.

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The performances of those athletes were watched by over a quarter of the world’s population, making PyeongChang the most digitally viewed Olympic Winter Games ever – an increase of 124 per cent from Sochi and 870 per cent from Vancouver. PyeongChang also enjoyed the largest amount of broadcast coverage in the history of the Olympic Winter Games, up 38 per cent from Sochi.

Bringing the Olympic Winter Games to PyeongChang was an opportunity to accelerate the development of the Gangwon region, as evidenced with both the Olympic and media villages being completely sold for residential use. Additionally, nine of the venues will now be used as multipurpose sports facilities and leisure and tourism facilities, helping PyeongChang to realise its vision of becoming a hub for winter sports.

PyeongChang 2018 Getty Images

In line with Olympic Agenda 2020 – to ensure the Games benefit a region’s long-term development plans – PyeongChang now enjoys a new high-speed train service, which connects the Alpensia mountain region and Gangneung coastal areas to Seoul in under two hours. In addition, 150 electric and 15 hydrogen-powered vehicles will continue to be used for the Korean Electro Power Corporation after the Games.

Nearly 2,000 young people from 83 countries with little exposure to winter sports participated in the

Dream Programme, while nearly 7 million young people participated in the Education Programme, during which they learned about the Olympic values.

Support from the Worldwide TOP Partners was essential to the staging of PyeongChang, through funding for the PyeongChang 2018 Organising Committee and every NOC, as well as through the provision of a wide range of products, vital technology and services, and global marketing campaigns.

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