Almaty have unveiled "groundbreaking" agreements with sporting and administrative bodies as they seek to continue the good momentum behind their bid to host the 2022 Winter Olympics and Paralympics in the aftermath of a video conference yesterday with the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
While three of the city's rivals in the 2022 race, Kraków, Lviv and Oslo, have battled with a series of setbacks in recent weeks, Almaty, along with the final applicant Beijing, has enjoyed a period of relatively quiet consolidation and success.
The country's President Nursultan Nazarbayev, who has led the central Asian nation ever since independence from the Soviet Union in 1991, has also reiterated "Kazakhstan is very serious about winning the right to host the Games".
This has been underlined with the announcement that Memorandum of Understanding's have been passed with the City of Almaty and all the National Winter Sports Federations, as well the Agency of Physical Culture and Sport of the Republic of Kazakhstan and the National Olympic and Paralympic Committee's.
"These agreements are the backbone of Almaty´s bid to host the Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games," claimed the National Olympic Committee of Kazakhstan secretary general Timur Dossymbetov.
"It shows that the whole country is united behind the bid and we have support not just from all levels of Government but also that the sports family is unanimously backing Almaty 2022.
"We are very glad about this, and with all the more than positive signals from the commercial community for supporting the bid and becoming investment partners if Almaty would be honoured to host the Games, the circle of support will be closed soon.
"Almaty 2022 is a national priority here in Kazakhstan, and the full nation is one team.
"But this is just another step on a long journey ahead with a lot of hard work which will be done with a lot of passion."
Bid figures have also expressed their satisfaction with yesterday's video presentation with the IOC, where Almaty Vice Mayor Zauresh Amanzholova, as well as vice-chairman of the Agency of Physical Culture and Sport Ilsiyar Kanagatov and NOC Executive Board member Andrey Kryukov, were among those on the call.
The conference call with the IOC, consisting of a 15 minute presentation followed by a 30 minute question and answer session with the IOC working group, was considered the "next milestone" on the road to Kuala Lumpur, where a final decision is due be made on who hosts the Games during the IOC Session there on July 31, 2015.
Before that, the IOC and the 2022 Working Group will analyse the files of all five presentations before producing a technical report for the IOC's ruling Executive Board.
This will assist the Board with its selection of an unspecified number of candidate cities, due to take place in Lausanne from July 8 and 9.
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