UK Sport and the British Olympic Association (BOA) have offered tentative support towards exploring a potential bid for a future Olympic and Paralympic Games but say no talks have been held to date, after Sadiq Khan vowed to establish an exploratory committee after winning a second term as London Mayor.
Khan made the pledge on Tuesday (May 4) with voting closing in the London Mayoral election two days later.
He claimed a Games would create "thousands of new jobs, boost tourism and solidify London as the sporting capital of the world."
Khan said leading figures would form part of an exploratory committee and claimed the Games could be the most sustainable edition to date, utilising existing venues from London 2012.
The Labour politician secured a second four-year term in office last night, securing 55.2 per cent of the vote to hold off the challenge of Conservative rival Shaun Bailey, who secured 44.8 per cent.
Neither candidate secured victory by first preference votes, as they did not reach the 50 per cent needed at this stage.
This meant a run-off was required with second preference votes counted and added to the final total, which then secured Khan the victory.
UK Sport chief operating officer Simon Morton, speaking earlier this week, acknowledged a future bid was part of the organisation’s thought process but no talks had been held with the British Olympic Association (BOA) or British Paralympic Association (BPA) to date.
"It is remarkable that next year we will be a decade on from the London 2012 Games and I guess it is natural to speculate on when they might come back," Morton said.
"From our perspective, a return of the Games at some point is in our long-term thinking but there have been no discussions with the main national organisations.
"We would need to come together to progress that, with the BOA and BPA and the Government.
"Most people in the Olympic and Paralympic Movement right now are fully focused on getting a safe and secure Tokyo Games on, so that is the priority at the moment in this area."
The Olympic Charter states that the BOA is the only body with the remit to put forward a candidate city from the UK for consideration by the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
BOA chairman Sir Hugh Robertson told insidethegames the organisation would be supportive of any plans, but acknowledged detailed talks would be required.
"We would be supportive of any plans to bring the Games back to London," Sir Hugh said.
"Any plans would require detailed consultation with the IOC.
"It is also worth acknowledging the next possible Games are a long way off."
The rescheduled Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games are scheduled to take place this year, with France’s capital Paris hosting the event in 2024.
Paris will join London in hosting the Games for a record third time.
Los Angeles will stage the Games in 2028, while Brisbane is expected to be rubber stamped as hosts of the 2032 event by the IOC later this year.
This would leave the 2036 Olympic and Paralympic Games as the new window for a potential bid.
Brisbane’s expected confirmation as 2032 hosts would be the first Olympic Games awarded under the IOC’s Future Host Commissions new bidding process.
The IOC established Future Host Commissions, tasked with identifying and recommending venues for the Games and entering into dialogue with prospective countries and cities over staging them, as part of reforms passed in 2019.
This has led to the abandonment of the previous approach of pitting competing cities against one another to host the Olympics for a given year, and then announcing the winner seven years in advance.
IOC President Thomas Bach has claimed that bidding races create "too many losers" which then do not bid again.
But the new process has been criticised due to a lack of transparency, while disappointing other contenders for 2032 including North and South Korea, Qatar, Germany, India and Indonesia.
Morton said UK Sport could work with the changing bidding processes of the IOC and International Federations, provided the rules were clear from the outset.
"We are seeing a real divergence in bidding processes, it used to be a very tried and tested formula," Morton said.
"We are seeing some International Federations, like FIFA and World Rugby, adopt a more structured and technical approach.
"We are seeing some, like the IOC, moving in a different direction with ongoing targeted dialogues and strategic allocations of events.
"From our perspective, what is important is we know the rules of the game going into the process.
"Either approach can work and as long as we know the rules, transparency and integrity, we can work with either of those processes."