Stockholm Ends Bid To Host 2026 Olympic Winter Games

Richard Brisius has been named President of Stockholm 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games Bid (SOK Photo)
Richard Brisius was named President of Stockholm 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games Bid (SOK Photo)

Just one week after the Swedish Olympic Committee (SOK) named a President to guide a potential Stockholm 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Games bid, the Capital now says it won’t move forward with plans to make a run for the Games.

Mayor Karin Wanngard, the city official in charge of finances, blamed the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for the city’s inability to continue with the bid.  She told the Associated Press Wednesday that the reason for canceling plans is that the IOC will not be able to report how big the financial contribution to the host city will be.

She said the figures “will arrive at the earliest in November.”

That leaves little time for the proper analysis to address issues and concerns, she said.  The IOC is expected to set an application deadline for early next spring.

The financial contribution by the IOC for the Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Games will be about USD $350 million – an amount the organization sources from its broadcast revenues.

Wanngard also claimed only her Social Democrat Party supported the bid.

A January feasibility report sent a positive message about a bid and with last week’s appointment of Richard Brisius as President of the campaign, it was said work would begin immediately.

Government officials now say they may instead focus on a 2030 Games bid.

The withdrawal could be seen as another blow to the IOC after four of six campaigns exited the 2022 Winter Games bid early and three of five bailed out of the 2024 Summer Games race that is currently being fought between Los Angeles and Paris.  Most cities changed their minds after losing public or political support due to risks and cost concerns.

Four IOC Vice Presidents are currently conducting a study on possible reforms to the bid process and they are expected to announce results in July.

Stockholm withdrew a bid for the 2022 Games after its formal application when political support fizzled amid cost concerns.  The city last hosted the 1912 Summer Olympic Games and has since bid for the 1952 and 2004 editions, failing on both tries. Including Stockholm’s 2022 campaign, Sweden has made a number of runs at the Winter Games but failed in attempts by Ostersund in 1994, 1998 and 2002; by Falun for 1992 and Gothenburg in 1984.

Stockholm investigating possible 2026 Olympic Winter Games bid (Wikipedia Photo)
Stockholm investigating possible 2026 Olympic Winter Games bid (Wikipedia Photo)

Sion, Switzerland is the only city to have received an official nomination from its National Olympic Committee to bid for the 2026 Games when the IOC begins to collect applications early in 2018.  But international interest is on the rise and other nations are exploring their options.

Former Olympic hosts Calgary, Innsbruck, Lillehammer and Sapporo have been investigating possible bids as well as Erzurum in Turkey and 2022 runner-up Almaty, Kazakhstan.

The IOC is expected to elect the 2026 Winter Games host in 2019.

A senior producer and award-winning journalist covering Olympic bid business as founder of as well as providing freelance support for print and Web publications around the world. Robert Livingstone is a member of the Olympic Journalists Association and the International Society of Olympic Historians.

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