- 16 May 2003
- IOC News
EB afternoon session - update on Games preparations
The EB started its afternoon session with the report of the Chairman of the Coordination Commission for the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Denis Oswald, who confirmed that preparations were progressing well but remained as tight as ever. He informed the EB that even closer work would be done with the Athens Organising Committee (ATHOC) in terms of close collaboration of IOC staff visiting Athens to gain updates on the preparations.
Mr Oswald's report was followed by a comprehensive update by ATHOC on its activities, including the launch of ticket sales for Greece and the rest of the European Union earlier this week; the delivery of the first venues such as the International Broadcasting Centre last week and the Doping Control Centre expected in a couple of days; the fact that all venues were under construction; the completion of the detailed operations planning for the test events in August; the plan to award overlay contracts by the end of the year; the agreement on the last version of the test events calendar by most of the International Federations; and the conclusion of the contract for the SAIC security system.
When asked about the IOC position regarding SARS, President Rogge confirmed that the IOC policy is to liaise daily with the World Health Organisation (WHO) and to follow their policy which is to advise persons to minimize travel to countries which are listed by the WHO as being affected by SARS. The President confirmed that the IOC must follow the decision of the governments who are much better placed to form policies on health issues. It was agreed that SARS related issues would be dealt with on a case by case basis.
With regards to the preparations of the Olympic Winter Games in Turin, it was confirmed by Olympic Games Executive Director, Gilbert Felli, that preparations had accelerated following a fruitful meeting between President Rogge and the Chairman of the Coordination Commission, Jean-Claude Killy, with Prime Minister Berlusconi in February. Mr Felli also highlighted that the sponsorship situation had improved. The Turin Organising Committee is expected to do its next report to the 115th IOC Session in Prague.
Finally, the Chairman of the Coordination Commission for the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, Hein Verbruggen, started his report by confirming that a letter had been sent to the Organising Committee offering sympathy and support for the current situation with SARS. He also said that work was continuing unhindered, however, through fortnightly conference calls. It was particularly noted that progress had been made on construction and that work on four venues was expected by the end of 2003, that five venue location changes had been proposed (the Commission deemed these to be better locations especially from point of view of legacy), that the new emblem was likely to be launched in Autumn, following the postponement of the launch initially scheduled for the end of May, due to SARS and that the dates of the Games will be subject to further study and discussion.