Oslo drops its bid to host 2022 Winter Olympics; Kazakhstan's Almaty and Chinese Beijing still competing

04 октября 2014, 14:36

Norwegian Oslo has withdrawn its bid to host 2022 Winter Olympics, Tengrinews reports citing Vesti.kz. This leaves Kazakhstan's Almaty and Chinese Beijing as the only competitors in the race.

On Wednesday, Norwegian ruling Conservative Party voted against providing the financial guarantee necessary for the bid. Norwegian Progress Party in the minority coalition also refused to fund the bid in May. "The Conservative Party MPs are divided and cannot advise the government to go ahead with the Olympics. We therefore asked the government to halt the application process," Conservative MP Trond Helleland is quoted as saying by Reuters.

Moreover, polls showed that more than 50% of the population opposed hosting the Games. "A big project like this, which is so expensive, requires broad popular support and there isn't enough support for it," Conservative Prime Minister Erna Solberg is quoted as saying by Reuters.

Before Oslo, three cities also withdrew from the bidding process. The most recent of them was Lviv in Ukraine.

Previously, Sweden dropped its bid to host the Olympics in Stockholm.

Polish Krakow withdrew from the competition, when almost 70 percent of the city’s residents voted against hosting the Olympics.

Most of the cities that decided to drop the bid to host 2022 Winter Olympics cited financial reasons. Practice shows that hosting such huge sport events is not always a feasible investment. Rising costs of hosting Olympic Games raises eyebrows: $51 billion spent on Sochi Winter Games in Russia, $19 billion spent on London Olympics in 2012, and $40 billion to host the Olympics in Beijing in 2008.

The incredibly large costs and the fact that the facilities constructed for the Olympics are sometimes abandoned as in case of the Athens, hosting Olympics does not always pay off.

Nevertheless, after the withdrawal of Oslo that was the clear favorite, Kazakhstan's Almaty, which was tagged as an outsider in the race by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) work group, and Chinese Beijing are the only contenders left to compete for the right to host the 2022 Winter Olympic Games. 

The final choice will be announced next summer at the 127th IOC Session in Kuala Lumpur.

By Assel Satubaldina

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