Fri, Dec 02, 2011 - Page 2 News List

China aided Taipei’s Games bid, mayor says

By Mo Yan-chih  /  Staff Reporter

Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin gestures during a press conference yesterday on Taiwan’s successful bid to host the 2017 Summer Universiade.

Photo: CNA

Support from China was instrumental in Taipei’s success in winning the right to host the 2017 Summer Universiade, Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌) said yesterday and added that the city would follow the “Olympic model” in handling issues such as the nation’s title and flag.

“The friendliness and support from the mainland’s committee members was a key factor in our success, and the achievement is the result of better cross-strait relations,” he told a press conference at Taipei City Hall.

Saying President Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) cross-strait policies had helped expand the nation’s international footprint, Hau said the city would adopt the “Olympic model” at the University Games as it was the norm in previous games, including the World Games in Kaohsiung and the Deaflympics in 2009.

The “Olympic model” refers to the 1989 agreement signed in Hong Kong that Taiwan would use the title “Chinese Taipei (中華台北, Zhonghua Taibei)” within the context of the Olympics when participating at the Games.

“We will follow the model as usual in handling the title, national flag and national anthem,” he said.

Hau and a 40-member delegation returned from Belgium yesterday after beating Brasilia, the capital of Brazil, to win the right to host the event at an International University Sports Federation (FISU) meeting on Wednesday.

The 12-day Games will be the largest international event Taipei has ever hosted, after the Summer Deaflympics and the Taipei International Flora Expo last year.

According to Taiwan’s executive committee member in the federation, Chen Tai-cheng (陳太正), Taipei won the bid over Brasilia by 13 votes to nine.

Taipei’s solid financial plan, professional sports facilities and full political support from the government played major roles in winning the bid, he said.

The central government is set to share the total budget of almost NT$40 billion (US$1.3 billion) with Taipei in hosting the University Games. Hau said the priority during his three-year term would be the completion of six new facilities being built for the event.

The six facilities, including the Taipei Dome, are scheduled to be completed by 2016.

Hau dismissed concerns about preparation work once he completed his second term in 2014 and said with its experience in hosting the Deaflympics and the Taipei International Flora Expo, the city government would host a successful University Games in 2017 regardless of who is in his office.

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