Bach Says Paris and LA Mayors Are ‘Optimistic’ About Agreement After Initial Discussions

Reporting from SwissTech Convention Center in Lausanne, Switzerland – International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach Wednesday said that progress has already been made towards the double-allocation of the Olympic Games in 2024 and 2028.

IOC President Thomas Bach (centre) with LA Mayor Eric Garcetti (left) and Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo celebrating double-allocation approval (IOC Photo)

IOC President Thomas Bach (centre) with LA Mayor Eric Garcetti (left) and Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo celebrating double-allocation approval (IOC Photo)

The plan, approved unanimously by the IOC Session in Lausanne Tuesday allows for both editions of the Games to be awarded to Los Angeles and Paris if both cities and the IOC can negotiate and sign a tripartite agreement that specifies which city will host first in 2024, and if there will be any consideration made to the city that accepts the 2028 consolation.

Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo and LA Mayor Eric Garcetti, who have declared that they are good friends, celebrated and embraced Tuesday evening after the plan was approved virtually guaranteeing that both cities will be awarded the Games to be held next decade.  But if they can’t strike a deal at least 30 days before the final 2024 election to be held in Lima September 13, then the IOC will elect only a single winner, leaving the other city without a Games.

“We had some formal talks yesterday with the Mayors over dinner already and we had a very brief talk this morning but very informal so we will now make contact with the bid leaders … to see when we can best arrive to this tripartite agreement,” Bach said from the SwissTech Convention Center Wednesday morning after viewing presentation rooms organized by the two cities.

French President Emmanuel Macron (left) and Paris 2024 Co-Chair Tony Estanguet at press conference following Technical Briefing to IOC Members (GamesBids Photo)

French President Emmanuel Macron (left) and Paris 2024 Co-Chair Tony Estanguet at press conference following Technical Briefing to IOC Members (GamesBids Photo)

“And this procedure will start tomorrow or the day after tomorrow because we want to have this ready right in time for Lima.  We do not want to arrive in Lima and still have to negotiate this.”

Should the two cities strike a deal, the 2028 nominee will need to drop out of the 2024 race and participate in a 2028 candidature process where it will work with a 2028 Evaluation Commission.  Bach said that team will be comprised of the same members as the 2024 team that has been lead by Patrick Baumann.

The 2028 candidate would then need to demonstrate that it has the same guarantees and venue contracts in place and is able to sign the new 2028 Host City Agreement.

“The reaction I had from both Mayors was completely optimistic so the negotiations and the questions will now start,” Bach said.

“Then it will come back once there is progress then it will come back to the Executive Board.”

Bach denied that any decisions had been made, or that the IOC was leaning in one direction.

“We will make sure that both cities will be treated on an equal level, this is why we will approach them both, he said.

“Then we will see how it develops, its too early to tell.  If we would know already we would not need to have these discussions about the tripartite agreement.”

Paris has been denying any interest in hosting the 2028 Games because the land required for the Olympic Village will not be available after 2024, and it’s a core component of the bid’s master plan.  But Tuesday evening Mayor Hidalgo didn’t rule out 2028 as a possibility, instead saying she would work towards a deal.

French President Emmanuel Macron led the Paris 2024 team in a presentation Tuesday and said “The French people are ready.”

Robert Livingstone

About Robert Livingstone

Robert Livingstone is a senior editor, award-nominated journalist and author, covering Olympic bid business as founder of GamesBids.com as well as providing freelance support for print and Web publications around the world. He is a member of the Olympic Journalists Association and the International Society of Olympic Historians. Follow him @enotsgnivil

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