The upcoming 10th of February 2010 will be the date, that the official host city for the 125th International Olympic Committee (IOC) Congress will be announced at Vancouver, Canada. How does this event related to my home city, Kuala Lumpur?
Kuala Lumpur had submitted a strong and potential bid to host the event. Kuala Lumpur is one of the two shortlisted cities bidding after certain evaluation, the other city is Buenos Aires. The IOC Evaluation Commission members made an inspection on November 19 – 20 last year of the proposed venues and facilities in KL.
Eemm…Singapore had hosted it in 2005, a country so near to Malaysia, that it would affects the KL bid. Since Malaysia is a largely Muslim country, awarding the IOC session to the country would be a good way of reaching out to the Muslim world. The 125th IOC Session will be very important because the 2020 Summer Olympic Games (to be the biggest in history) host city will be announced after bidding session, and the current President of IOC, Jacques Rogge will retire while a new president will be elected on the session. It would definitely gives an impact to the session’s hosting city, since all the IOC members and media are there.
The another hosting job, is the 2019 Asian Games. We have witnessed a successful Doha 2006 Asian Games, and we will expect the biggest Asian Games, Guangzhou 2010 this year. Then, Incheon 2014, South Korea. I thought 2018 would be the year?….no…no…no…Olympic Council of Asia had changed the year, so that Asian Games will be one year earlier than the Olympic Games. Hence, the next Asian Games after Incheon 2014 will be in year 2019. 9 years to go…but the application for the bids started already.
After two previous failed attempts on bidding for Asian Games, Kuala Lumpur this time has strong confidence and potential to host 2019 Asian Games. Kuala Lumpur has all the infrastructure and facilities needed to host the games, of course, some upgrades are needed too, since the difference between KL Commonwealth Games 1998 with 2019 Asian Games is 21 years!!! Unexpected loss to Doha for 2006 Asiad, since KL is favoured during the bidding…KL lost just because of Doha’s economic wealth. The high budget planned for hosting 2010 Asian Games which is in favour of KL also has lead to withdrawal of KL and other cities, leaving only Guangzhou, which finally becomes the host city. KL did not bid for 2014, but now planned for a strong and capable 2019 bid. The result will be announced in 2013, long way to go…since the application and bidding process takes a long time.
Wish that KL will finally win the right to host 2019 Asian Games! Too bad that Olympic Council of Asia restricted the games to only 35 sports, if not, KL will be planning for the biggest Asian Games in history. The other potential cities bidding for 2019 Asian Games are: Dubai (UAE), Hanoi (Vietnam), Hong Kong (China), Manila (Phillipines), Singapore, Taipei (Taiwan), Colombo (Sri Lanka), and of course Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia). [The bolded ones are the real capable and strong potential cities]
The current Prime Minister of Malaysia, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak had mentioned that the country will not bid for 2020 Summer Olympic Games to fullfill Wawasan (Vision) 2020, because the country is not ready for it, since the country now focused on the 2019 Asian Games first before going further. However, there might be chance for KL to host Olympic Games by 2024 or 2028.
UPDATES – 11/2/2010
Kuala Lumpur lost to Buenos Aires for the right to host the historic 125th IOC Session in year 2013, which will decide on the host city for 2020 Summer Olympic Games and elect a new president replacing Jacques Rogge. Kuala Lumpur gained 31 votes while Buenos Aires gained 58 votes. It seems that KL fails again, let’s hope KL would emerged as the winner for the bidding of host city for 2019 Asian Games.