Australian Federal Minister for Sport, Richard Colbeck, spoke to Ministry of Sport following the announcement Brisbane is set to host the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Discussing the announcement, which took place in Tokyo ahead of the start of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, following an International Olympic Committee (IOC) voting session, Colbeck said the excitement reminded him of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games.
“It’s one of those really exciting moments, I think we all remember what it was like when Sydney won the Olympics, and it was no different,” Colbeck told Ministry of Sport.
“There was huge anticipation and obviously we were hoping they voted yes and not no, but you just don’t know until the vote happens.
“Huge anticipation and excitement, and that’s flown into the aftermath where Brisbane is now a future host city of the Olympic Games of the 35th Olympiad.
“I’m really excited that we can look forward to those Games and all the youngsters watching the Games that are about to start can use that as motivation to compete at an Olympic and Paralympic Games on home soil in just 11 years,” he said.
Talking about how the Australian Government’s funding of sport will shift in the lead up to 2032, Colbeck said: “I’m sure the AOC’s (Australian Olympic Committee) got some perspectives and I’m sure the NSOs (National Sporting Organisations) will come and talk to us about what they see as being required, but we’ve committed in the budget to maintain the funding levels for Olympics and increased the funding for Paralympics.”
“We need to look at the bigger picture of how we manage these things across the board from a range of perspectives and we will certainly be doing that,” he said.
Adding on to the funding discussion, Colbeck said the commitment from the Australian Government to match the Queensland Government and local government funding with a 50% split was crucial.
“That was really important to maintaining the momentum of the bid; that was one of the things the Queensland Government wanted for them to be able to continue with the bid,” Colbeck said.
“They said they couldn’t do it without that level of commitment, so we may not have been able to even get on stage yesterday without that.
“Certainly, it gave some confidence to the IOC and the delegates that there was such strong support demonstrated from the three tiers of government.
“The process commenced with the ideas from the South East Council of Mayors and the work they did and the Commonwealth Government being a strong supporter for a period of time and that was expressed very strongly by the Prime Minister.
“That partnership that was built through that conversation with Queensland was certainly pivotal, because it may have not even gotten to that point otherwise,” he said.
On the immediate opportunity the announcement of Brisbane as the host of the 2032 Games has for young Australians and sporting organisations across the country, Colbeck said: “The seed has been planted about the opportunity to compete, and it will be reinforced by what occurs at Tokyo over the next couple of weeks and then the Paralympics subsequently.”
“All those athletes will do what they’ve done for a long time, they will spend a long time working at it at their local club or whatever forum they’re participating in, and we may see some new ones.
“Skateboarding is making its first appearance at the Olympics and surfing is back so there’s all those sorts of things to look forward to as well,” he said.
In the lead up to the 2032 Olympics, Australia is set to host a number of major international sporting events, including the Women’s Basketball World Cup in 2022, the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, the Netball World Cup in 2027, and is currently bidding for the rights to host the 2027 Rugby World Cup.
When asked about Australia’s upcoming decade of major sporting events, and what kind of impact they will have on the 2032 Olympics, Colbeck said Australia’s exposure in the international sporting world while be greatly increased.
“What those events will do is also bring athletes and teams here that want to compete on Australian soil and try it out and see what it’s like,” Colbeck told Ministry of Sport.
“You’ll see with those sports increased exposure with the opportunity for young Australians to see the world’s best playing here for those sports, some of which are obviously Olympic sports.
“There will be continued exposure over the green and gold decade we have coming and potentially more as we’re bidding for the Rugby World Cup in 2027.
“The opportunity for young people to see the world’s best athletes competing in Australia will continue over the decade and have a positive impact in the lead up to 2032,” he said.
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