By Duncan Mackay
British Sports Internet Writer of the Year

Jin Sun Kim (Small)November 9 - Jin-sun Kim, the former Governor of Gangwon Province, who was the driving force behind Pyeongchang's two first bids to host the Winter Olympics and Paralympics, has been given a special role in their campaign for 2018.

He has been appointed by the South Korean Government as an Ambassador to the bid.

With less than eight months left in the bid race for the 2018 Winter Games, where Pyeongchang are facing rivals Annecy and Munich, Kim's appointment as an Ambassador is a major boost to Pyeongchang 2018.

He brings considerable Government support to the bid and as well as several close contacts within the International Olympic Committee (IOC) having twice narrowly failed to bring the Games to Pyeongchang, losing out to Vancouver 2010 and Sochi 2014.

Kim, who retired as Governor earlier this year, will now work with the Bid Committee and use his valuable international experience to help promote the bid.

Lee_Kwang-jaeKim was replaced as Governor by Lee Kwang-jae (pictured) in June but his successor is embroiled in controversy.

Lee, one of the close aides to the late former South Korean President Roh Moo-hyun, is currently appealing against a six-month prison sentence suspended for one year imposed after he was found guilty of taking bribes.

If he loses, Lee could be forced to step down as Governor.

Kim visited the Association of National Olympic Committees meetings in Acapulco last month but the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) General Assembly, which are due to begin on Friday (November 12) during the Asian Games in Guangzhou, will be the first opportunity for him to participate in bid activities in his new role.

Pyeongchang will be hoping that Kim can help get the bid back on track after it suffered the embarrassment earlier this month of being given an official warning by the IOC following a sponsorship deal between Korean Air and the International Skating Union (ISU) was ruled as being against the rule.

Korean Air is headed by Yang-Ho Cho, the chief executive and chairman of the Pyeongchang bid.

Cho said: "On behalf of the Bid Committee, I welcome the appointment of Jin-sum Kim as an Ambassador for PyeongChang 2018.

"Jin-sun Kim will join the Pyeongchang 2018 delegation at the OCA General Assembly this week and his wealth of experience working with the Olympic Family and the international sports community will prove invaluable as we approach the final months of the campaign.

In addition to Kim's appointment, the South Korean Government also met today to reaffirm its support for Pyeongchang and outline plans to coordinate and develop key features of the bid for the remainder of the campaign.

Headed by Sun-kyu Park, Vice Minister of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism (MCST), representatives from 14 Government departments, the Gangwon Province, Korean Olympic Committee, and the Pyeongchang 2018 Bid Committee gathered to discuss details of the Candidature File and government guarantees due for IOC submission by January 11, 2011.

They also discussed how all parties will work effectively together to coordinate the forthcoming IOC Evaluation Commission visit in February.

It was also confirmed that the Government Support Commission, chaired by the Prime Minister, would meet in December to progress the plans outlined today and ensure that the government commitments are fulfilled.

Cho said: "I am also delighted about the continued support from the South Korean Government, and we are very grateful to have their promise of full cooperation to deliver the guarantees that will be made to the IOC upon submission of our Candidature File early next year."

Contact the writer of this story at [email protected]

Related stories
November 2010: Pyeongchang 2018 given warning by IOC over Korean Air deal with ISU
October 2010: Exclusive - Pyeongchang claim they will do anything to "protect the integrity" of bid
October 2010: Pyeongchang 2018 bid team secures half a million pound support deal
October 2010: Ten-year-old on cloud nine after winning Pyeongchang aircraft design competition
October 2010: Ski jumping is a great Korea move