Vancouver to explore feasibility of bid for 2030 Winter Olympics

Representatives from Vancouver, Whistler and four First Nations signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to explore the feasibility of what they described as an Indigenous-led Olympics Games.

Vancouver and Whistler previously held the 2010 Winter Games where Canada topped the medal standings for the first time at a Winter or Summer Olympics. (Representative Image)   -  AP

The western Canadian city of Vancouver and municipality of Whistler, together with Indigenous First Nations representatives, will explore the feasibility of making a bid to host the 2030 Winter Olympics, officials said on Friday.

Representatives from Vancouver, Whistler and four First Nations signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to explore the feasibility of what they described as an Indigenous-led Olympics Games.

There are over 630 First Nation communities in Canada, which represent more than 50 nations and 50 Indigenous languages, making up almost 5% of the country's population of 38 million.

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Vancouver and Whistler previously held the 2010 Winter Games where Canada topped the medal standings for the first time at a Winter or Summer Olympics.

"This MOU is also an important first step towards exploring the feasibility of bringing the Olympic and Paralympic Games back to the region," the Canadian Olympic and Paralympic Committees said in a statement.

"We believe this agreement provides the foundation for transformative change for future event hosting and collaborative work with Indigenous communities across Canada and the world."

An exploration committee is the key step before efforts possibly transition to a new bid committee for a real pitch to the International Olympic Committee.

The decision comes three years after residents in Calgary, host of the 1988 Winter Olympics, voted resoundingly against the western Canadian city's plan to bid for the 2026 Games.

Beijing is scheduled to host the next Winter Olympics from Feb. 4-20 next year, while Milan-Cortina d'Ampezzo in Italy has already been selected to stage the 2026 edition.

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