Istanbul 2020 Steps Up Campaign Ahead Of IOC Briefing

Ali Babacan, Deputy Minister of Turkey for Economic and Financial Affairs, is to lead Istanbul 2020’s high-level delegation at the 2020 Candidate Cities briefing for International Olympic Committee (IOC) members in Lausanne, Switzerland on July 3.

Joining Babacan will be Minister for Youth and Sport, Suat Kilic, OPC member and President of the Turkish National Olympic Committee, Professor Ugur Erdener, Istanbul 2020 bid Chairman, Hasan Arat, and TOKI President, Ahmet Haluk Karabel.

Babacan said, “it is a huge honour to be representing Turkey and presenting our Olympic ambition to the IOC at such a critical time in the bid’s campaign. We will go to Lausanne full of optimism following the publication of the IOC 2020 Evaluation Commission Report. This report clearly positioned Istanbul 2020 as a bid of ‘high quality’, which offers the Olympic Movement a ‘unique’ Games.

“Turkey’s desire to host the Olympic and Paralympic Games has never been stronger. The bid enjoys full cross-party support, the support of all our major corporations and most importantly, the support of 90 per cent of the Turkish public.

“This is Turkey’s fifth bid since the enactment of our Olympic Law in 1992, but this time is different. This time our desire is matched by capacity and we look forward to explaining this to the IOC next week in Lausanne. Over the last seven years we have hosted over 40 major international events and we have shown that Turkey is ready to host a technically excellent Games”, he said.

Istanbul 2020 bid chairman Hasan Arat added, “the 2020 Candidate Cities briefing for IOC members is the first significant opportunity we have to outline Istanbul 2020’s unique Games Concept to the majority of the IOC members at the same time. We are therefore delighted that Deputy Prime Minister Ali Babacan is able to lead our team, as it is a statement of the full support that our bid enjoys from all levels of government and across all major political parties.

“The briefing is an incredibly important milestone for the bid and we are ready to explain our proposed special partnership with the Olympic Movement in great detail. What we are proposing is more than just seven weeks of Olympic and Paralympic celebration in seven years’ time; we are proposing 70 years of an historic impact and a new culture for the Olympic Movement.”