IOC President Thomas Bach insisted the "unifying power of sport" was needed "more than ever" ©Panam Sports

International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach has claimed that his organisation is "ready to shape this new world" and called on Panam Sports to "set a course for the future."

Bach’s comments came in a speech delivered via video link at the Panam Sports General Assembly in Chilean capital Santiago.

The German official hailed Panam Sports for the delivery of multi-sport events over the past 12 months including the first editions of the Junior Pan American Games and Caribbean Games staged in Cali and Guadeloupe respectively.

After two years grappling with the COVID-19 crisis, Bach said it was great to see athletes back in competition but insisted the world still faced "difficult times" with "conflicts and wars on the rise."

Bach claimed the "unifying power of sport to promote peace and solidarity" was needed "more than ever."

"Together with all of you, the IOC is ready to shape this new world with our shared Olympic values," said Bach.

Bach urged the Panam Sports General Assembly to
Bach urged the Panam Sports General Assembly to "set a course for the future" ©Panam Sports

"This is why our Olympic Agenda 2020+5 is focused on strengthening the role of sport as an important enabler for the UN [United Nations] Sustainable Development Goals.

"It is great to see Panam Sports engaging proactively with Olympians 365.

"Our framework to strengthen the partnership with NOCs [National Olympic Committees] and social development institutions in areas such as education, gender equality, climate action and many more.

"In this way, we are joining hands to strengthen the role of sport in society, allowing us to even better pursue our shared mission to put sport at the serve of humankind."

Bach hailed the "great leadership" of Panam Sports President Neven Ilic for "leading the way to promote sport and its values through the Americas" as Santiago prepares to stage next year’s Pan American Games.

"At your General Assembly, you have every opportunity to set the course for the future from the 2023 Pan American Games held right here in Santiago in Chile to the Paris 2024 Olympic Games and even beyond that to the Los Angeles 2028 Olympic Games.

"Building on the strong foundation that you have at Panam Sports you can look ahead with great confidence because your athletes have shown us that we can only go faster, we can only aim higher and we can only become stronger if we stand together in solidarity."