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Pyeongchang rejects North Korea proposal to co-host 2018 Games

(Reuters) - The organizing committee for the 2018 Winter Games in South Korea's Pyeongchang (POCOG) has poured cold water on North Korea's suggestion that it could co-host some of the Olympic skiing events at its Masik resort.

North Korea's International Olympic Committee (IOC) member Chang Ung hinted on Tuesday that the North was willing to host events at the resort in Wonsan, Gangwon province.

However, POCOG responded on Wednesday by saying that holding events hundreds of kilometers away from the host city was unrealistic and would breach IOC regulations.

The two Koreas have only resumed dialogue in recent weeks after months of tensions earlier this year appeared to take their frayed ties to the brink of war as Pyongyang threatened missile and nuclear attacks against the South and its ally the United States.

The United States fought on the side of the South in the 1950-53 Korean War, which ended in a truce, not a peace treaty.

"Co-hosting goes against International Olympic Committee regulations which stipulate that, unlike the World Cup, all the Olympic events be held within the host city," the committee said in a news release on Wednesday.

"We should make sure technology and administrative works are in optimal condition in order to host an event- and athlete-oriented Olympic Games. Holding some of the events in the Masik resort, more than 300 kilometers away from Pyeongchang, cannot guarantee meeting this goal," the committee added.

IOC Chairman Jacques Rogge has previously expressed opposition to co-hosting events withNorth Korea, saying in 2011 that the IOC would consider allowing the two Koreas to march together at the 2018 opening ceremony but not to share events.

"As far as spreading venues between the two countries, that is something we do not consider under the current Olympic Charter," said Rogge.

2018 POSSIBILITY

On Tuesday, North Korea's Chang told U.S. funded broadcaster Voice of America that the Masik resort could possibly hold 2018 events if an agreement could be reached.

"When construction is complete, it (Masik) can be used in an international event and possibly in the Olympic Games," Chang was quoted as saying in the telephone interview.

He acknowledged, however, that it was not a simple decision to make and that there would have to be complex discussions among several bodies such as the IOC and International Ski Federation to assess the possibility.

Last month, Switzerland banned the sale to North Korea of equipment for the luxury ski resort planned for the ruling elite in the impoverished state that is under U.N. sanctions.

The North approached several Swiss companiesicon1.png to provide chair lifts and cable cars worth 7 million Swiss francs ($7.57 million) for its sprawling Masik resort, the Geneva daily Le Temps reported on August 19.

But the Swiss government, contacted by the companies for clearance, added luxury sporting equipment to its list of goods banned under United Nations sanctions, Marie Avet of the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), said.

"The Federal Council decided on July 3 to also put infrastructure for sports facilities on the list, especially when they have a more luxury character for resorts," Avet told Reuters. "These resorts have a luxury character, that is why it is not appropriate to export."

North Korea has said construction of the resort was part of its plans to boosteconomic developmenticon1.png and improve livelihoods and not just for the elite.

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Pretentious magazine Monocle 'a briefing on global affairs, business, culture and design' ran a piece on the Korean ministry for unification in their latest issue.

It included this gem of insight as part of an analysis of opportunities a reunited Korea might enjoy:

4rakxt.jpg

Doh. Clearly their researchers have never heard of PyeongChang.

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PyeongChang 2018 re-elects Kim as President

Kim_Jin-Sun_630x364.jpg
©POCOG

15/10/2013

The PyeongChang 2018 Organising Committee (POCOG) has re-elected Kim Jin-sun as its president at its 6th General Assembly in Seoul.

In his acceptance speech, Kim laid out key goals for hosting a successful Olympic Winter Games in 2018.

“I will make sure that all infrastructures, such as venues, transportation networks and other related facilities, are completed on time as planned," he said.

Kim also promised to establish concrete goals under PyeongChang’s Games vision of "New Horizons”, explaining that "the newly-instated committee will work with experts and scholars-alike to ensure that the principles and traditions of the Olympic Movement are reflected in PyeongChang’s operation plan.”

Kim also highlighted the importance of securing legacies from the Games, while ensuring that athletes remain at the heart of their planning.

“We will seek wisdom to identify the kind of legacy we want PyeongChang to leave behind, as well as how best to achieve it," he said. "POCOG will devise a plan to make its 2018 Winter Games an all-inclusive and far-reaching festival, which will set PyeongChang apart from other previous Games."

Assembly members in attendance included Choi Moon-soon, Governor of Gangwon Province, Shin Hak Yong, the Chairman of the Education, Culture, Sports and Tourism Committee, Kim Jae Yun, the Chairman of the Special Committee on PyeongChang Winter Olympics and International Sporting Events, and Honorary President of the Korean Olympic Committee, Y. S. Park.

The meeting also approved the proposal of re-appointing incumbent POCOG Secretary-General Moon Donghoo.

The 2018 Winter Games will be held in PyeongChang from 9 to 25 February 2018.

IOC

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http://news.naver.com/sports/index.nhn?category=sports_general&ctg=news&mod=read&office_id=001&article_id=0006613641&redirect=true

A workshop was held earlier this week with some IIHF reps to discuss the revival of automatic qualification for the host country in Olympic hockey. What the IIHF wants most is for Korea to continue to improve their quality of hockey. A final decision will be held by May 2016 at the IIHF annual general meeting.

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World Curling Federation wants mixed doubles in Olympics

Curling officials want a mixed-gender event in the 2018 Olympics.

“Mixed doubles is part of our sport that has taken off around the world,” World Curling Federation president Kate Caithness said, according to The Associated Press.

Mixed doubles curling includes teams of one man and one woman, as opposed to the traditional four-person teams in the Olympic men’s and women’s events since 1998.

The federation has been working on developing mixed curling to meet International Olympic Committee requirements since a tentative bid in 2005 to include mixed doubles in the 2010 Olympics was rejected, according to the AP.

The World Mixed Doubles Championship debuted in 2008.

The IOC will decide on mixed curling’s fate for 2018 in 2015, according to the AP.

The 2014 Olympics will include mixed-gender relays for the first time in biathlon and luge as well as a mixed team event in figure skating. Previously, pairs figure skating and ice dancing were the only Winter Olympic medal events with men and women competing together.

http://olympictalk.nbcsports.com/2013/12/05/curling-mixed-doubles-winter-olympics/

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1,500 Days until the 2018 Winter Olympic Games Opening Ceremony in The Olympic Park of Hoenggye in Pyeongchang, South Korea. How are preporations going?

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She's American, but this snowboarder of Korean descent could become one of the biggest stars of 2018. She could be the next Toby Dawson, only this time winning a medal as a crowd favourite in Korea.

http://sports.yahoo.com/news/snowboarder-kim-13-wins-too-young-olympic-team-231116721--oly.html

Los Angeles (AFP) - Chloe Kim would be one of the USA's best medal hopes in Sochi if it wasn't for one problem -- at 13 she is not eligible to compete in the Winter Olympics.

With just weeks to go before the Sochi Games, American snowboarder Chloe Kim has consistently outscored her American teammates and Olympians Hannah Teter, Gretchen Bleiler and Elena Hight.

"I think I would be really nervous and pressured. I am glad I am not old enough, almost," Kim told The New York Times.

Athletes had to be 15 by December 31, 2013 to qualify for the Olympics with begin February 7.

"She's a special one," American freestyle and snowboard coach Mike Jankowski told the newspaper. "I've never seen anyone like her."

Kim now trains at Mammoth Mountain in California. She was born in Long Beach but nows lives in the Los Angeles suburb of La Palma.

Her parents are not disappointed she can't go to Sochi.

"If they don't have an age limit maybe the parents would push their kids too soon," said her father Kim Jong-Jin, who emigrated to the US from South Korea.

Chloe Kim is instead looking forward to the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Games in South Korea when she will be just 17 and where her South Korean heritage would make her one of the most watched and sought after athletes of those games.

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Kim Jin-Sun is right when he says the 2010 loss and especially the 2014 loss was a blessing in disguise. That Pyeongchang lost what they felt was a sure fire victory in 2014 meant they couldn't take an Olympic Games for granted. Korea had always won an Olympics or a World Cup on their first try, so this was a wake up call that they had to work for it.

http://m.koreatimes.co.kr/phone/news/view.jsp?req_newsidx=150288

By Kim Tong-hyung

I happened to be standing near Kim Jin-sun in what he now describes as the darkest moment in his 15 years involved with PyeongChang’s Olympic effort.

It was in the summer of 2007 when, after a devastating loss to Russia’s Sochi in an International Olympic Committee (IOC) vote to determine the host of the 2014 Winter Games, Kim and other Korean delegates dragged themselves to a flight back home from Guatemala City.

Of all airports, the plane had to stop over in Vancouver, the Canadian city that narrowly edged PyeongChang in the 2003 IOC vote to win the rights for the 2010 Games.

At the terminal’s densely crowded smoking room, Kim, then the chain-smoking Gangwon Province governor with a thicker hairline and more intensity in his speech, stared searchingly for an answer, his gaze fixed somewhere between the herd of heads and the high ceiling.

"Reporters keep asking me whether we would give it a third try,’’ Kim told his senior officials after taking a few puffs, probably aware that a number of journalists were within earshot.

"So what shall I say?’’

Kim had arrived in Guatemala describing the IOC vote as a last stand as it was highly uncertain PyeongChang would be allowed a third Olympic bid considering domestic politics.

Korea’s southwestern town of Muju had been insisting for years that it deserved a shot at the Winter Olympics as much as PyeongChang did. Busan, the southeast mega port, had aspirations for hosting the 2020 Summer Olympics, and voiced concerns about the divergence of national efforts.

Kim’s advisors spoke more quietly than he did. Kim finished by speechifying on conviction, which betrayed a face shaped by dejection.

"We will make a third attempt to honor the passion shown by Koreans and the many members in the IOC who supported us. I think this is our answer for now,’’ said Kim, his voice lacking his usual boom.

Fortunately for Kim, the third time proved to be the charm. After surviving a painful, political struggle to represent Korea’s Olympic bid again, PyeongChang finally landed the 2018 Games at the IOC vote in Durban, South Africa, in 2011.

When recalling the conversation of seven years ago, Kim, now president of PyeongChang’s Olympic organizing committee, a job he manages to do without the help of cigarettes, laughed with the weariness of a man who has seen it all.

"That was my most difficult moment. That was a moment of self-doubt and soul-searching. There was so much uncertainty,’’ Kim said at his spacious, 28th-floor office in central Seoul in a recent interview with The Korea Times.

"The sense of loss was great, because we had been fully expecting to win in Guatemala City. The sense of doubt and fatigue from Gangwon Province people, and the nation as a whole, was evident. I was worried that, even if we do get another shot as an Olympic-bid city, our efforts would never have the same drive again,’’ he continued.

"We had our share of critics and I needed to convince them that PyeongChang deserved another shot. I was asking myself fundamental questions as to why Korea needed to host another Olympics and how it could reshape the country and Gangwon Province region for years to come. It was a painful time for me, but I think I came out with stronger determination.’’

Kim now wonders whether PyeongChang winning the rights to host the 2018 Games instead of the 2010 and 2014 events was a blessing in disguise.

Korea seems to be on course for a winter-sports renaissance, evidenced by the large number of people congesting ski resorts and children swarming inner-city ice rinks on weekends.

PyeongChang’s succession of Olympic bids and the brilliance of Olympic champions like figure-skater Kim Yu-na and speed-skater Lee Sang-hwa have certainly contributed to the phenomenon.

Kim believes that the country developing a lucrative winter sports market will help the PyeongChang Olympics leave a lasting, positive legacy after the party leaves town.

There had been dreaded examples of Olympic host cities crippled by costs in the following years, but Kim claims that PyeongChang’s economic aspirations of boosting tourism will have a better shot at being realized.

Russia is spending an unprecedented $50 billion on completely revamping its faded Black Sea resort for the Olympics. At least for now, PyeongChang officials believe they could manage with just one-fifth of that budget.

Much of PyeongChang’s critical investment projects, such as the building of the high-speed rail network between Wonju and Gangneung, are cohesive with existing regional development plans.

Kim also points out that the concentration of sporting and convention facilities, which are taking hold as the Games move closer, have already resulted in a visible boost in leisure and business visitors.

"In 1999, when I first announced the intention to bid for the Olympics as governor, Gangwon Province was getting 230,000 foreign visitors per year. Now, the number is 1.5 million. The Olympics will help Gangwon realize its potential as a tourist destination,’’ Kim said.

"It’s very difficult to book our ski resorts on the weekends and our Alpensia Resort has become a very busy convention venue. We were adding elements that didn’t exist in the region and these elements have been driving demand.’’

Kim believes that PyeongChang and other Gangwon resort towns could establish a niche as an accessible, winter sports destination for Asians.

"I think we can encourage more foreign tourists to PyeongChang and the wider region after the Olympics. Winter sports have more room for growth in Asian than in North America and Europe, and I think we are ideally positioned to exploit that opportunity.’’

At the time of the interview, Kim was busy preparing for a visit to Sochi, the previous source of his misery. He and 150 other members of PyeongChang’s organizing committee will be at next month’s Olympics to participate in the IOC’s ``observer program’’ for knowledge transfer to the forthcoming Olympic host.

"I am not that interested about Sochi’s `hardware’ side of things. The facilities, the distance between them, the transportation networks and all those things… there is nothing that we don’t already know,’’ Kim said.

"I think it’s important that we take a close look at how Sochi officials will operate the Olympic, how they find a cohesion between the service provided by people and what is provided by their facilities, how they manage to reduce costs while maximizing the effect.

``After the Sochi Games, all eyes will be on us. We will be promoting the PyeongChang Games at Sochi, operating a `PyeongChang’ house in the Olympic village to show our advanced facilities, the increasing public passion for winter sports and the culture of our country.

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Chief organizer of 2018 Winter Games carries Olympic torch

SOCHI, Feb. 5 (Yonhap) -- Kim Jin-sun, the chief organizer of the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea's PyeongChang, on Wednesday carried the Olympic torch in Sochi.

With the 2014 Winter Games just two days away, Kim carried the Olympic flame for 200 meters in the Adler district in the host city.

PyeongChang will be the first South Korean host of a Winter Games in four years' time. The east coast resort town won the bid to host the quadrennial event in its third try, after losing out to Vancouver and then to Sochi.

Kim, a former governor of Gangwon Province, where PyeongChang is located, served as the head of the bidding committee in PyeongChang's first two tries. He was appointed as a special ambassador for the successful third bid.

"I was praying for a successful Olympic Games here in Sochi," Kim said afterward. "I also told myself we have to prepare really well for our own Olympics."

Kim said he will try to pick the brains of Sochi organizers and ensure that PyeongChang will host "a perfect Olympic Games."

"The torch relay in PyeongChang will be unique, and it will be open to everyone," Kim added. "Our focus will be on running an Olympic Games that's distinctively PyeongChang."

Kim and the rest of the organizing committee for PyeongChang will operate an exhibition hall named 'PyeongChang House' during the Sochi Winter Olympics to promote the 2018 Games.

Yonhap

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/yonhap-news-agency/140205/olympics-chief-organizer-2018-winter-games-carries-olympic-t

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Kim should replace Bach, once she's back in shape of course. :D

Edited by paul

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PyeongChang 2018 is proudly presenting itself to the world, by showcasing the best features of the host city and the Republic of Korea at PyeongChang House, located just near the footbridge leading up to the center of the Sochi Olympic Park. The design of PyeongChang House is inspired by the traditional Korean house, called hanok.

The main exhibition at PyeongChang House will cover the culture of PyeongChang and Gangwon Province, as well as Korea’s long history, PyeongChang 2018’s vision, “New Horizons” and the progress made in our Games preparation.

Visitors to PyeongChang House will also enjoy dance performances, getting the sense of a great balance between the traditional and modern (B-Boy dance, K-pop) culture assets of Korea.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DyyGWK7vLKg

http://www.pyeongchang2018.com/horizon/eng/page/sub05/sub05_08.asp?hb_Mode=readArticle&hb_BoardItem_ID=57885&hb_BoardManager_ID=BDENAA06&hb_PageNum=1&hb_SearchItem=&hb_SearchWord=

pyeongchang-house1.jpg

pyeongchang-house5.jpg?

ph_img_02.gif

pyeongchang-house2.jpg

pyeongchang-house3.jpg

pyeongchang-house4.jpg

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The inside is sooooooo much better than that ugly exterior. Loved the animated korean paintings with the deers (would love to see something like it in the handover)

That snowman at 0:29 was cute :P despite the excessive simplicity of the logo, it's starting to grow on me (must be the infinite possibilities of the colored sticks brand)

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The very weird thing about the PyeongChang building in Olympic park is that a significant part is dedicated to promoting Medical Tourism to Korea. Huh??? You can see it in the bottom posted picture.

The rest of the building was nifty. A mix of tradition/culture/nature etc. With a stage where k-pop groups dance to - you guessed it - Gangnam Style

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The girls/interpreters at the PyeongChang house were not very knowledgeable. But very decorative.

Edited by hektor

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PyeongChang 2018 marks 1,400 Days until the Opening Ceremony with a Flag Raising Ceremony. Full story here - http://www.insidethegames.biz/olympics/winter-olympics/2018/1019410-pyeongchang-2018-mark-1-400-days-to-go-with-flag-raising-ceremony - Source: Inside the Games.

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So some Russian drone sports official says Pyeongchang won't match the impressive $50 billion Sochi infrastructure, so that's why Koreans are upset. Uh-huh. Actually, she is right that they will be nothing alike. Because Sochi was so bad, PC has already surpassed Sochi.

http://olympictalk.nbcsports.com/2014/04/25/svetlana-gladysheva-sochi-pyeongchang-winter-Olympics/

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IOC Coordination Commission begin three-day visit to PyeongChang. Full story here - http://www.insidethegames.biz/olympics/winter-olympics/2018/1019735-ioc-coordination-commission-begin-three-day-visit-to-pyeongchang - Source: Inside the Games.

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PyeongChang Enters Winter Games Spotlight. Full story here - http://www.aroundtherings.com/site/A__46867/Title__PyeongChang-enters-Winter-Games-spotlight/292/Articles - Source: Around the Rings.

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This country is ruled by Kim Jong Un right? If so no wonder no one wants the games, the IOC keeps giving them to dumbarses.

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This country is ruled by Kim Jong Un right? If so no wonder no one wants the games, the IOC keeps giving them to dumbarses.

WTF!!!...You're getting confused with PeyongYang!

Peyong Chang is very much on our side of the 35th parallel!

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This country is ruled by Kim Jong Un right? If so no wonder no one wants the games, the IOC keeps giving them to dumbarses

Incorrect. Kim Il-Sung AND Kim Jong-Un both rule the country. His spirit is always watching over DPRK and haunting the stoodpid mericans that do not understand the sofisticated and elegant history, culture, and power of the DPRK (like you O.O)

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Pyeongchang gets 1st sponsor for 2018 Olympics

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — It may have taken some time, but the 2018 Winter Olympics finally have their first domestic sponsor.

The Pyeongchang Organizing Committee said Tuesday that South Korean telecom giant KT Corp. has agreed to become the Games' first Korean partner.

The announcement follows months of concerns that Pyeongchang had yet to secure a domestic sponsor, nearly three years after being awarded the 2018 Olympics.

KT will provide telecommunications services for the Games, including wireless communications and broadcasting facilities. The company is South Korea's largest fixed-line telecom service provider and the second-largest mobile service operator.

IOC President Thomas Bach, who is scheduled to hold a press conference in the host city on Wednesday, attended the signing ceremony in Seoul.

AP

http://www.chron.com/business/article/Pyeongchang-gets-1st-sponsor-for-2018-Olympics-5592735.php

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PyeongChang 2018 Announces Official Partner for Sports Apparel

02 Jul 2014

PyeongChang: The PyeongChang Organizing Committee for the 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (POCOG) has signed an official partnership agreement with Youngone Outdoor in a ceremony held at the Alpensia Convention Center in PyeongChang. POCOG President KIM Jin-sun notes, “This partnership will greatly help promote our Games. I’m confident that Youngone will join our preparation efforts and share the vision to deliver a Best Games in PyeongChang.”

SUNG Ki-hak, CEO of Youngone Outdoor said, “We are proud to be the official partner of PyeongChang 2018. The company is looking forward to providing the best possible services to Korean athletes with our THE NORTH FACE brand.”

THE NORTH FACE is a brand Youngone Outdoor introduced to the Korean market in 1997. The company has also been a leader in sports and outdoor business over the past 40 years.

The signing ceremony followed the closing of the IOC Debriefing of the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games and was also attended by IOC President Thomas Bach and Gunilla Lindberg, Chair of the IOC’s Coordination Commission for the PyeongChang 2018 Games.

As an official partner, Youngone Outdoor will provide a wide range of sports apparel for Games-related personnel, including Team Korea and the PyeongChang 2018 Games’ workforce.

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