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Dubai Olympic Games bid

Thursday 21 March 2019 (UAE)   

Olympic Games in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, UAE

As of end 2015, a summary of bidding by Dubai to host the Summer Olympics boils down to:

  • 2028 games - no information so far except a vague comment reported in Aug 2014.
  • 2024 games - a bid considered when 2020 bid cancelled, but nothing submitted by deadline.
  • 2020 games - serious consideration of a bid with a feasibility study conducted, but Dubai decided not to bid.
  • 2016 games - a bid rumoured but no official comments or announcements to suggest a bid was ever really considered.

Summer Olympic Games locations

  • 2028 - bidding to start in 2019. Several cities considering a bid, no concrete information about Dubai (or Abu Dhabi, or UAE) as of end 2015. Winning bid to be announced in 2021.
  • 2024 - winning bid to be announced on 15 Sep 2017. Dubai not in list of candidate cities announced Sep 2015.
  • 2020 - Tokyo, Japan. Dubai announced it was evaluating whether or not it should make a bid, and decided not to, but might make one for 2024.
  • 2016 - Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Dubai was rumoured to be considering a bid but didn't.
  • 2012 - London, Great Britain.

Dubai Olympic Games bid for 2028

  • See comment below about Xinhua News report 07 Aug 2014. No other information supporting a 2028 bid reported so far (as of end 2015).

Dubai Olympic Games bid for 2024

  • 16 Sep 2015 - the IOC announced 5 candidate cities for the 2024 Summer Olympic Games. Dubai was not one of them. The five cites are: Budapest (Hungary), Hamburg (Germany) (withdrew after referendum in Hamburg in Nov 2015 voted no to hosting the games), Los Angeles (USA), Paris (France), and Rome (Italy).
  • 07 Aug 2014 - Xinhua News in China quoted Ali Omar, director of the sports development department at the Dubai Sports Council (DSC), as saying "Hosting the Olympics is a dream. We hope to submit such a bid within the next eight years, God willing."
    • Reference: http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/sports/2014-08/07/c_133537347.htm
    • Since 2014 + 8 = 2022, that might imply Dubai (or UAE) submits bids starting in 2015 for the 2024 Olympic Games, or 2019 for the 2028 Olympic Games.
  • 29 Jul 2011 - Dubai announced it would not make a bid for the 2020 games and instead would consider making a bid for the 2024 games.

Dubai Olympics 2020

Information about the Dubai Olympics 2020 - Dubai Olympic bid for the 2020 Summer Olympic Games.

  • 29 Jul 2011 - a statement issued by the Dubai Government Media Office said Dubai would not enter a bid for the 2020 Olympics, but did say a bid for the 2024 would be a serious consideration. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince, was quoted as saying "We fully intend to place a bid once I am totally satisfied that we are prepared to host the greatest sporting event in history in a way that would add value to the Olympic Movement itself ... a future bid which is most likely for the 2024 Olympic Games." Reference: http://www.reuters.com/article/olympics-emirates-dubai-idUSL3E7IT28F20110729
  • Sheikh Mohammed, the Ruler of Dubai, was reported in the press on 25 April 2010 as saying "We are conducting feasibility studies to evaluate the costs and benefits of a bid, ... All we are doing now is evaluating whether we should pursue that goal, and our ability to meet the criteria to host the Olympic Games."
  • An Olympic Games Dubai feasibility study is being undertaken by Falcon and Associates, with findings expected to be published by October 2010.
  • 29 May 2004 (repeated from 2016 bid headline below): An AB report quoted Salem bin Dasmal as saying "... we are earmarking 2020 as when we could potentially host the Olympics."

Possible issues with a Dubai Olympics bid

  • One major problem is the temperature during the UAE summer months which can be in excess of 45° Celcius during the day, with high humidity. However precedents for moving the Olympic games to cooler months have been set, for example
    • Melbourne Olympic Games in 1956 were held in November/December
    • Tokyo Olympics in 1964 were held in October
    • Mexico Olympics in 1968 were also held in October
    • Sydney Olympics in 2000 were held in September
  • A 30 April 2010 WAM report quoted International Olympic Committee (IOC) president Jacques Rogge as saying "Weather isn't a disqualifying factor, but it is factor,"
  • Another possible issue is granting visas for Israeli atheletes to attend. Normally Israeli citizens are not permitted to enter the UAE, however there have been some exceptions made, for example the Dubai Tennis Championships in 2009 and 2010.
Countries and cities bidding for the 2020 Olympic Games

The International Olympic Committe (IOC) will decide in 2013 who will host the 2020 Olympic Games

  • Bari, Italy - was considering a bid in 2009 but was excluded.
  • Dubai, UAE considering a bid (see above) - cancelled as of 29 or 30 July 2011, but a bid for the 2024 Olympics might be considered.
  • Doha in Qatar, a country near the UAE, is also considering a bid for the 2020 Olympic Games (they failed to get the 2016 Games).
  • Hiroshima, Japan - considering a joint bid with Nagasaki - Nagasaki pulled out, unknown what status of Hiroshima bid is.
  • Nagasaki, Japan - considering a joint bid with Hiroshima - pulled out (Reuters report 19 May 2010).
  • Palermo, Italy - was considering a bid in 2009. Rome is the Italian bid as of May 2010.
  • Rome, Italy - chosen on 19 May 2010 by the Italian Olympic Committee (CONI), ahead of Venice.
  • Tokyo, Japan - considering a bid?
  • Venice, Italy - bid rejected in favor of Rome by CONI (Reuters 19 May 2010).
  • South Africa Olympic Committee has invited cities in the country to state if they want to bid for the 2020 Olympics (13 July 2010 news reports)

Dubai Olympic Games bid 2016

It is difficult to find confirmation of an actual bid (or announcement of a bid) by Dubai for the 2016 Olympics. It appears to be misunderstanding or misinterpretation of a couple of comments referring to Dubai Sports City as a potential Olympic Games venue when the project was announced. A Wikipedia page dedicated to Dubai's 2016 bid gives references to articles about Olympic Games bids, or about Dubai in general, but none with information about a bid from Dubai. In May 2004, one report quoted an official who made it clear that Dubai was not considering hosting the Olympic Games before 2020, and following that statement there were no further official or unofficial announcements of a bid being considered for the 2016 games, despite what several reports from 2004-2007 claimed.

  • 13 Sep 2007: Deadline for bid submissions for 2016 Summer Olympics. Dubai did not submit a bid, and it seems that there never really was a serious bid consideration by Dubai. Doha, Qatar did submit a bid.
  • 28 Sep 2006 (Gulf News): Qatar yesterday announced an interest to bid for the right to host the 2016 Olympic Games bringing them into direct competition with Dubai who is also bracing itself to make a strong pitch. But still no reference to any comment or announcement that Dubai was officially considering a bid.
  • 2005 UAE Year Book: Dubai also has the real Olympics firmly in its sights, having decided in 2004 to support a UAE bid for the 2016 Olympic Games. But no reference given to a decision or announcement. The Yearbook also had a reference to Dubai Sports City (DSC) under construction as a facility which would support an Olympic Games bid.
  • 29 May 2004: Another AB or Construction Week (CW) report (Vision for Dubailand becomes clearer) quoted Mr Bin Dasmal saying "... we are earmarking 2020 as when we could potentially host the Olympics."
  • 16 May 2004: Arabian Business (AB) thought that Salem bin Dasmal, head of the Dubai Tourism and Development Company (DTDC) had announced that Dubai would make a bid for the 2016 Summer Olympics. AB reported that Mr bin Dasmal confirmed 2016 was on the cards. However what Mr bin Dasmal actually said (according to AB) was: "We're earmarking 2020 as being when we could potentially host an Olympic, but we'll do a bid before that in 2016 and hopefully get 2020."
    • The AB report also quoted Mr bin Dasmal as saying (about Dubai Sports City investors) "One of the investors is Abdul Rehman Flaknaz, who's a member of the Olympic committee, which is very important for us as we [Dubai government] and them [investors/developers] have agreed that the facilities are built to a standard to enable us to bid for the Olympics in the future."
  • 02 Mar 2004: The Gulf Today also reported on the press conference, quoting Mohammed Al Gergawi as saying that "The UAE is ready, via the Dubai Sports City, to hold the Olympics."
  • 01 Mar 2004: Following a press conference about the new Dubai Sports City project in Dubailand, AP (Associated Press) reported that Dubai hopes to have a spectacular sports city operating by 2007, in preparation for its bid for the 2016 Olympic Games, but AP did not say how or when any authority in Dubai had decided to bid for the 2016 games. AP said that Abdul-Rahman Falaknaz, one of the DSC investors, believes Dubai could hold the 2016 Games, but did not quote him. AP did quote Mohammed Al Gergawi, chairman of the Dubai Development and Investment Company, said at a press conference announcing the Dubai Sports City project in Dubailand as saying "The United Arab Emirates is ready, via the Dubai Sports City, to hold the Olympics." The article headline was "Dubai wants to host 2016 Olympic games".

UAE Olympics history

  • 17 Aug 2004 - UAE won its first ever Olympic gold medal (and first Olympic medal of any color). Sheikh Ahmed Bin Hasher Al Maktoum won the men's double trap shooting event.
Last update Saturday 23-Jan-2016. Page development 4L 5C.
Related pages
Related websites (new window)
  • www.olympic.org - official Olympic Games and International Olympic Committee (IOC) website.
  • www.uaenoc.net - UAE National Olympic Committee (UAENOC) (UAE NOC) website. Mostly in Arabic.


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