BOCOG vows to deliver "simple, safe and splendid" Beijing 2022
TOKYO -- Beijing 2022 organizers have once again assured the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the world that China will deliver a "simple, safe and splendid" Winter Olympic Games in fewer than 200 days to go.
Zhang Qian, head of the International Relations Department, represented the Beijing Organizing Committee for the 2022 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (BOCOG) to present an update report concerning the Games preparation at the 138th IOC Session here on Wednesday, underlining seven aspects, including venues and infrastructure, test events, operation of competitions and venues, Games services, communications and engagement, sustainability and legacy, COVID-19 prevention and control.
The BOCOG said all 12 competition venues have been completed and passed International Federations (IFs) on-site pre-homologation, and non-competition venues are undergoing construction or renovation. The Main Media Center was handed over to the OBS recently, and related infrastructure construction such as water and power supply and meteorological infrastructure will be completed on schedule.
Test activities were staged last snow season to examine venues and facilities, operation and emergency response, with briefings held for comments and suggestions from international experts.
"Ten international test events and three training weeks are planned from September to December. All elements of the games will be tested," said Zhang, adding that from now to September, some 80 experts from IFs and the OBS will come to China for on-site inspection of venues.
The BOCOG has released Competition Schedule by Session version 9.0, completed Overlay Book version 6.0 for venues, and is working on athletes' qualification tracking.
Logistic teams for all venues are set up, covering services of accommodation, transport, food and beverage and other aspects. The final version of the Beijing 2022 Customs and Freight Forwarding Guide was released.
Zhang told attendees of the IOC Session that the BOCOG has had five new corporate sponsors onboard since March, bringing the total number of marketing partners to 45, and over 1.12 million people have applied for volunteering for Beijing 2022.
Zhang revealed that more than 300 public events were held, engaging 100 million people. As many as 15 million primary school students across the country participated in the Beijing 2022 mascot story writing contest. Other events such as One-Year Countdown, International Olympic Day Celebration and Beijing 2022 Live Site have helped create a good atmosphere for the Games.
As for other important activities, Zhang said that the design of the medals has been finalized, torch design was released, while the IOC approved the overall torch relay plan. The Opening and Closing Ceremonies are planned in a creative way.
During Tokyo 2020, the BOCOG will launch an event called "Next stop, Beijing!" so that the two Olympics will be mutually enhancing.
Carbon Neutralization Plan has been developed with 11 venues of the games, including those for speed skating and alpine skiing, to be powered by green electricity.
The Legacy Plan was fully implemented with eco-restoration in Yanqing and Zhangjiakou zones. A low-carbon policy will be strictly followed throughout the preparation of the Games.
"The health and life safety of athletes and other participants are highest on our agenda," said Zhang.
The BOCOG has set up an international working group on COVID-19 control together with the IOC and the World Health Organization (WHO) and set up a special task force with Chinese health authorities for the epidemic control for the Beijing Games.
"With our joint efforts and further cooperation, we will deliver a 'simple, safe and splendid' Games to the world," said Zhang.
Juan Antonio Samaranch Jr., Chairman of the IOC's Beijing 2022 Coordination Commission of the IOC for Beijing 2022, also offered updates about the Games venues, operations, legacy and sustainability.
"All planning is good. All planning is in pretty good shape, and everything is under schedule and under reasonable control, despite very difficult COVID situation and measures that have to be taken," he commented.
Samaranch also expressed his wishes toward a successful Beijing Winter Olympics.
"We need a very successful Games in February next year in Beijing. We really need that success for the sake of everybody, for the sake of keeping that light of hope really bright and open," he said.