With significant public opposition, Oslo’s bid for the 2022 Olympic Winter Games still needs the Norwegian government to sign off on financial guarantees before the International Olympic Committee (IOC) can officially accept the candidature. On Friday, Members of Parliament came up with terms that would try to normalize the cost of hosting and make the bid more palatable for constituents.
In fact, some of the terms balk at IOC “requirements” but answer the call of Olympics President Thomas Bach who last year requested more creativity from bids.
Newspaper Aftenposten reported that both government parties crafted the list of demands in a letter to Oslo 2022 including a stipulation that the IOC “family” should be required to pay for their own accommodations during the Games instead of having five-star hotel rooms provided by the organizing committee.
They also asked for some control over the Olympic program so that no new events will be added to the 2022 Games, which they say have become too big and costly. The IOC routinely reviews the program and its members vote on the inclusion of new sports; sport federations also commonly add disciplines or styles.
On the list, the parties request the use of existing venues in and near Oslo to reduce costs and environmental impact.
In direct response to controversy surrounding both the Beijing 2008 and Sochi 2014 Olympic Games, the letter spoke to the protection of the rights of workers on Olympic projects and a focus on a foundation of inclusion, equality and respect for human rights. The athletes should be always at the centre of attention.
Parliament Members Svein Harberg and Ib Thomsen wrote to the bid committee that “it is in Norway’s interests to contribute towards influencing the future organization of the world’s largest sports event.”
“It is critical that democratic countries that respect human rights still want to arrange the Olympic and Paralympic games.”
The Members also suggested that the Oslo 2022 Organizing Committee should cooperate closely with the Lillehammer 2016 Youth Olympic Winter Games.
Oslo is competing with Almaty, Beijing, Krakow and Lviv to host the 2022 Games and application files are due into the IOC by March 14. The IOC Executive Board will announce which cities they’ll accept as candidates in June and will elect a winner July 2015 in Kuala Lumpur.