Geneva To Bid For 2018 Winter Games

Agence France-Presse reports Geneva announced Friday it will bid for the 2018 Winter Olympic Games after it consults with its citizens.

Hotelier Marco Torriani, and Jean-Pierre Jobin, president of Geneve Tourisme, have launched an exploratory committee with SFr200,000 in funding from Sport-Toto, the Basel-based sports betting company.

Torriani said, “seventy years after the Olympic Games of St. Moritz it would be marvellous to organize them again in Switzerland”.

He said all ice-related events could be held in nearby towns with snow-sports events being held in the nearby cantons of Vaud and Valais. The two mean have contacted ski operators in Vaud and Valais about the possible bid.

Geneva’s residents will be consulted in a referendum to be held before the end of 2009, the deadline for the Swiss Olympic Committee to launch any official bid.

Torriani said, “Geneva and its surrounding region boasts a wide range of excellent sports venues, all of which correspond to the criteria set down by the International Olympic Committee (IOC)”.