November 7 - Ukraine is continuing its emergence as a more powerful and influential country, as their bid for the 2022 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games gathers pace, other more established bidders fall away, reinforcing the excitement growing within the former Soviet state that they can compete with the favourites, it was claimed here today.
Ukraine is a nation full of ambition, which will be using its recent success of co-hosting the 2012 UEFA European Championship with neighbours Poland as a "warm up session" if their bid to host the 2022 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games is victorious, said Juri Tamm, Head of Presidents Office, chief of Staff of the National Olympic of Ukraine.
"The Olympic Movement need different nations and Ukraine need new facilities and new infrastructure and this seems right to run this parallel," he said.
Ukraine officially announced last month that Lviv will bid for 2022 based around the picturesque Carpathian Mountains.
"The Ukraine has quite a different economic situation [to much of the rest of Europe], it is strong but the mountain area in which we plan to host the Olympics is not so strong and I think it is not just Ukraine, but all the surrounding neighbours who are also excited by the possibility of the Winter Olympics being held there," said Tamm, a former hammer thrower who won Olympic bronze medals at 1980 and 1988 competing for the Soviet Union.
"The Ukraine's co-hosting of the Euro's is a great example of positive change which can come to a country hosting a major sporting event for the first time and could continue the pathway for non-traditional nations being selected."
Mike Lee, the former communcations director of London 2012 who is now the chairman of Vero Communications, told the Conference that a new world order is emerging when it comes to hosting major events.
"Brazil hosting World Cup and Olympics back to back is a great illustration of the changing picture," he said.
"This is the world's economy where the strengths and weaknesses lie in different markets.
"We are seeing a rise of new markets - Asia, Latin America and The Middle East and many parts of the Soviet Union are some of these.
Rome's controversial departure from the 2020 bidding race because of the economic crisis in Italy dented Europe's reputation for hosting Olympic Games.
"The story of Rome tells us that countries who are Olympic bidding do need a significant amount of guarantee from Governments – in which Italy could just not get from [Italian President] Mario Monti," said Lee.
"It is key to bid for the right reasons to suit you.
"There must be strategic research and planning to which event to bid for.
"It is more than getting yourself on the map, but also about once successful, securing future events."
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May 2012: Icon Bubka slams thoughts of "senseless" political boycott of Euro 2012 football tournament
February 2012: Ukraine targeting 2022 Winter Olympics to help underprivileged areas, reveals Bubka