Bulgaria has been awarded a major ice hockey event by the IIHF ©BIHF

Bulgaria has been awarded the hosting rights for the 2022 International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) Women’s World Championship Division III Group A tournament.

Ukraine, Belgium, Romania, Bulgaria, Lithuania and Hong Kong are set to contest the event in Sofia, where promotion to Division II Group B will be up for grabs for the winner.

The competition is set to be the first IIHF Women's World Championship tournament held in Bulgaria for four years.

A total of 44 countries have entered next year's Women's World Championship season.

The number of nations has led to the IIHF creating a Division III Group B, scheduled to feature Estonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia and Israel.

The IIHF is due to announce the host nation for the event soon.

Ice hockey's worldwide governing body is set to vote on a proposal later this month to also hold the top-tier women's event in Olympic years from 2022 onwards.

The Women's World Championship does not currently take place in the same year as an Olympics.

If the change is approved at the IIHF's Semi-Annual Congress in Saint Petersburg on September 25, the tournament, traditionally staged in March or April, will be held in August.