IOC President completes successful China trip - visits Olympic Winter Games 2022 venues and sees school in Sichuan province helped by the IOC following the 2008 earthquake
IOC President Thomas Bach was able to see first-hand some of the successful IOC projects during a week-long trip to China.
In Sichuan Province he visited a school that the IOC had contributed to following the earthquake which struck just ahead of the Olympic Games Beijing 2008. He played football with some of the pupils and saw the new facilities.
The school is one example of widespread Olympic education projects carried out in the country. With the Olympic Games 2008, 400 million young Chinese received education in Olympic values throughout the country.
After the visit to Sichuan, the President went on to the site of the winter sports venues for the Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022, in Hebei Province. There he saw how the Games are acting as a catalyst for sustainable development plans for the region which were already underway before Beijing’s election as host city.
“We were able to see the progress already being made since Beijing won the Games a few short weeks ago. We visited the site for the Olympic Village and for the cross-country ski venue.”
While he was there, the President made an unplanned stop in a local village and met more than a hundred local people, gathering their views.
'They seemed extremely happy with what has happened. The region is already developing as a tourist area but with the Olympic Games they told me they would benefit even more. They thanked us for the IOC's confidence in them and their region to deliver the Games,' he added.
In both Sichuan and Hebei provinces the IOC President was able to meet the local political authorities. In Sichuan he was able to discuss the IOC's contribution to the school and education projects. In Hebei they discussed the next steps for the development of the region for organizing the Olympic Winter Games. In Hebei the local authorities confirmed that the Province would deliver on all its promises.
The IOC President left the sites 'full of confidence' both in the success of the Games and in the legacy they will leave to the region and its people and to China.
During the trip, the President was accompanied by IOC Vice-President Zaiqing Yu and the President of the NOC of China, Liu Peng.
Back in Beijing, President Bach met a group of more than a hundred volunteers who had helped with the IAAF World Championships. He congratulated them and thanked them for their dedication.
On the last day of the IAAF Athletics World Championships, the President met many of the athletes, including the successful Chinese 4x100 men's relay team which took the silver medal.
He also presented medals to the winners of the women's 4x100 relay event, who had set a new world record.
Later, the President also met Usain Bolt, who, earlier in the week, he had congratulated for his “historic victory” in the 100 metres.