Saudi Arabia’s NEOM could emerge as a surprise host of the Winter Olympics, according to the UK’s Independent newspaper. Following Qatar’s successful hosting of the FIFA World Cup and amid repeated bids from within the region for the Summer Olympics to be held in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia has been named as a potential host for the Winter Olympic games. The links emerge as the International Olympic Committee (IOC) struggles to find a host willing and able to host future events.
Few cities have the funds and infrastructure to host the Winter Olympics. Investigations revealed the cost of Beijing hosting the Winter Olympics in 2022 topped $38bn.
Saudi Arabia, which has made no secret of its hopes to host a FIFA World Cup in the near future, could step in and fill the void. No official bid has been made from the Kingdom to host the Winter Olympics.
The IOC, the organisation responsible for both the Summer and Winter Olympics, has delayed the decision to host the 2030 event until next year. Salt Lake City in the US and Japan’s Sapporo are the only cities to have so far lodged a confirmed bid.
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