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International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach completed his Asian tour today, meeting with Republic of Korea President Park Geun-Hye.
Meeting at the presidential residence, the Blue House, President Bach thanked the Korean President for her strong support for the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang.
President Park underlined her government’s continued backing of the Games, and emphasised the importance of sport in society and its educational role in Korean society. The Korean President added that she was strongly supportive of the IOC's fight against doping and zero-tolerance policy on drugs. She also expressed interest in learning more about the IOC Athlete Career Programme, which helps athletes develop dual careers and hone skills for working life after competition.
Earlier, President Bach attended a lunch hosted by Korean Olympic Committee President Kim Jung-Haeng and met a dozen Korean athletes and Olympic medallists. This followed a meeting with staff at the PyeongChang 2018 offices in Seoul.
Accompanied by IOC Coordination Commission Chairwoman Gunilla Lindberg and Korean IOC member Moon Dae-Sung, President Bach heard progress reports from the PyeongChang Organising Committee (POCOG) President and CEO, Kim Jin-Sun.
President Bach later addressed the POCOG staff, telling them that with the handover of the Olympic flag at the Sochi Olympic Winter Games in February, the spotlight would soon be on them as the next hosts of the Games. He added that each of them would play an important role in welcoming the world.
Seoul was the final stop for President Bach during a four-city Asian tour. On Monday, he visited Nanjing, host of the 2nd Summer Youth Olympic Games in 2014, before travelling to Beijing on Tuesday. On Wednesday he was in Tokyo for talks with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and a meeting with the Japanese Olympic Committee, following their successful bid for the 2020 Summer Games in the Japanese capital.