Taipei to bid for 2030 Asiad: mayor

05/17/2019 07:30 PM
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Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲, right)
Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲, right)

Taipei, May 17 (CNA) Taipei is planning to launch a bid for the 2030 Asian Games and may seek Beijing's "understanding" of Taipei's intentions, Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) said Friday.

Taipei has the ability to host the Asiad following the success of the 2017 Summer Universiade held in Taipei, Ko said on the sidelines of the 2019 Taipei Tourism Exposition.

"Taiwan should go global and should not be restricted to one place all the time," Ko said, noting that the city's Sports Department is already drafting a plan for the bid.

The mayor, who is likely to make a run for president in 2020, will visit Japan for four days beginning on May 23, and he is scheduled to visit the Tokyo Organizing Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games to help Taipei prepare a 2030 Asiad bid.

He will also send delegations to Hangzhou and Nagoya, host cities for the 2022 and 2026 Asiads, to observe how they are preparing for the major international sports event.

When asked how China might influence Taiwan's bid to host the games, Ko admitted that China will likely exert pressure to keep Taiwan from acting as host but said he will seek Beijing's understanding.

Ko said he will try his best to achieve the goal even though he only gave himself a score of 55 in the area of cross-Strait relations, which could decide whether Taiwan's bid succeeds or fails.

There are at least six other potential bidders for the 2030 Asiads based on media reports -- India, South Korea, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand and Uzbekistan. Taiwan has made three attempts to host the games since 1990 without success. The 2018 games were held in Jakarta.

No timetable has been set for when bids have to be submitted or when the 2030 host city will be decided.

(By Liang Pei-chi and Emerson Lim)enditem/ls

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