OCA Arrives in Riyadh For 2030 Asian Games Bid Evaluation

Organizers of Riyadh’s bid to host the first-ever Asian Games in Saudi Arabia in 2030 welcomed an Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) evaluation committee at King Khalid International Airport Saturday.

Riyadh 2030

An OCA evaluation committee will inspect venues and watch sport demonstrations in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia to better understand the city’s 2030 Asian games bid (Riyadh 2030 Photo)

The Capital is looking to host the Gulf nation’s first-ever Asian Games, facing off against only neighboring geopolitical rival Qatar – a nation that has already staged the Games in Doha in 2006.  Both oil-rich countries are underlining their bids to be a national priority.

Kazakhstan’s Andrey Kryukov is Chair for the nine-member committee that will tour Riyadh until November 10.

The OCA will use this site inspection along with a bid book submitted in October to help members elect a winner during the 39th OCA General Assembly scheduled for December 16 in Muscat, Oman.

Riyadh 2030 Bid Committee President HRH Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Alfaisal, said “we welcome the OCA Evaluation Committee and look forward to sharing our vision for a transformative Asian Games with the delegation.”

“We will demonstrate the great honor it would be to host Saudi Arabia’s first ever Asian Games in 2030 and how Riyadh, Saudi Arabia and all of Asia would see long-lasting impacts on sport and wider society.

https://twitter.com/RiyadhAG2030/status/1325425873340739584

“The Evaluation Committee’s visit is an opportunity to bring key aspects of our bid book to life, answer all of the questions posed and highlight how Riyadh 2030 is an opportunity to inspire a new generation of athletes throughout Asia, unifying the region in a celebration of sport.

“We are fully ready to showcase our ambitious, visually stunning and environmentally-conscious hosting vision for the 2030 Asian Games – and Riyadh promises to work hand-in-hand with the OCA to deliver a modern, vibrant, diverse event and an unforgettable, festival atmosphere for fans and athletes alike.”

In a statement, Riyadh 2030 highlights the cornerstones of its bid explaining “Riyadh 2030 would be Saudi Arabia’s first ever Asian Games and the Bid Committee will showcase how they would deliver a new model for the Games in a new era for the Kingdom – ultra-modern yet steeped in history, ambitious but responsible, visually stunning but environmentally-conscious.”

Organizers believe the Games will be a driving force marking the transformation of Saudi society.

The compact and sustainable plan outlined in the bid book includes three hosting zones including Qiddiya, Dammam and Riyadh Historical Zone.  The Games, if awarded to Riyadh, would leverage existing venues as well as temporary and purpose-built arenas along a state-of-the-art transportation network.

Doha is “a gateway to certainty” Claims 2030 Asian Games Bid

“We are fully ready to showcase our ambitious, visually stunning and environmentally-conscious hosting vision for the 2030 Asian Games – and Riyadh promises to work hand-in-hand with the OCA to deliver a modern, vibrant, diverse event and an unforgettable, festival atmosphere for fans and athletes alike,” Prince Abdulaziz said.

The Asian Games, considered the second-largest international multi-sport event after the Olympics, will be the first major event awarded since the emergence of the Coronavirus pandemic and new health protocols worldwide, especially around sport.

The 2018 Asian Games were staged in Jakarta-Palembang, Indonesia and the next event will be held in Hangzhou, China in 2022.  Japan will host Aichi-Nagoya 2026.

Robert Livingstone

About Robert Livingstone

Robert Livingstone is a senior editor, award-winning 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