Despite a recent survey showing low Swiss support for hosting the 2026 winter Olympic Games, International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach has expressed confidence in the bid. He was speaking on Monday from this year’s event in PyeongChang, South Korea.
“The debate is just beginning”, the IOC head told Swiss Public Television RTS, just one day after an opinion poll published in the Swiss media revealed that only 36% of respondents supported the so-called Sion 2026 campaign for the southern Swiss canton of Valais.
“It’s necessary to convince the Swiss that the Olympic Games can help a region, renew it, and allow it to welcome the best winter sport athletes in the world,” Bach enthused.
Despite the fact that the Swiss have a history of rejecting Olympic hosting nominations, Bach says he wants to believe that having the 2026 winter games in the alpine nation is still a possibility.
“It’s up to the Swiss to decide. I hope that the reforms made to the 2020 Olympic agenda show people that we want a feasible, sustainable event that makes use of existing or temporary infrastructures, and there Switzerland has a lot to offer.”