POSTED: March 20th 2013

Madrid 2020 commitment shown through political figures

Madrid Mayor Ana Botella and bid chief Alejandro Blanco / SFC
Madrid Mayor Ana Botella and bid chief Alejandro Blanco / SFC

CHAD WISE and LAURA WALDEN in MADRID / Sports Features Communications

March 20 – The Spanish Minister for Education, Culture and Sport, Jose Ignacio Wert, Mayor of Madrid Ana Botella, President of the Autonomous Region of Madrid Ignacio Gonzalez and COE and Madrid 2020 Bid President Alejandro Blanco highlighted the values of the Madrid 2020 Olympic bid by expressing the commitment of the institutions they represent. They also alluded to the support of the Spanish authorities in general for the Bid.

“This is the most wonderful feeling I’ve had since I started heading the Madrid 2020 Bid,” Botella said after making public the findings of a nationwide survey which revealed 76.5% of Madrid citizens supported the Bid.

“As the mayor of Madrid I know that our bid has tremendous backing from both the Spanish public and the country’s political institutions, and I know that there is a whole groundswell of unconditional support right behind us. That support is ongoing and it drives us forward every day.

“The 2020 Bid would not have been possible with the enthusiastic involvement of the out-of-Madrid venues – Barcelona, Valencia, Zaragoza, Malaga, Cordoba, Valladolid, Paracuellos del Jarama and Getafe – and their respective autonomous regions – Catalonia, Aragon, Castile and Lean, Valencia and Andalusia – who have always given us their unstinting support.”

Spanish Monarchy

The Madrid Bid has also received the backing from the Spanish monarchy.

“Madrid 2020 has the full support of our royal family, which is truly an Olympic family,” Botella said. “The Prince of Asturias, who took part in the sailing competition at Barcelona 1992, is the honorary president of our bid and is anxious to play an active role as an Olympian promoting the Games around the world.

"Prince Felipe is fully committed to helping make our dream, which is shared by Madrid, Spain and the whole Spanish-speaking world, a reality.”

Wert announced a new anti-doping act, approved by the World Anti-Doping Agency, will come into effect in June and will bring Spanish legislation in line with WADA and the IOC’s regulations on the issue.

The Spanish government, the regional government of Madrid and Madrid City Council have also agreed to create the Olympic Development Office, which will help build the infrastructures and meet the cost of the work.

“The Olympic and Paralympic Games are sport, but they are also education and culture,” Wert said. “This is a national project in every sense and it is for that reason that it has the explicit support of virtually every political party represented at each one the three levels of government.”

Gonzalez announced new venues would be built as a sign of the Autonomous Region of Madrid’s commitment, including the Paracuellos Shooting Centre and La Gavia White Water Centre. He also announced the regional government would take part in the construction of the Olympic Village.

“Together we make a great team, and like a good sports team we are all pulling together to overcome any weaknesses,” Gonzalez said.

Youth attraction

Blanco emphasised the sincere passion that Spanish society, the country’s sporting institutions and major Spanish and international companies are exhibiting for the project. Young people however have expressed the most support of the bid, he explained.

“[Young people] see it as a unique and exceptional project, as the project of their lives,” Blanco said.

Madrid 2020 has attracted more than 40,000 followers on Facebook and 17,000 followers on Twitter. The Madrid 2020 video channel has also drawn more than 190,000 viewers.

Soria described the legal and administrative initiatives the government will implement to ensure the Madrid Games’ success, including the protection of the Olympic and Paralympic logos and symbols. Madrid 2020 will attempt to proactively cease ambush marketing, which causes harm to official sponsors, and will strengthen the overall protection of sponsors’ rights and the awarding of tax incentives.

“There is one very good explanation for this level of commitment,” Botella said. “We have been dreaming of hosting the Games for the best part of 15 years and we have been working together to achieve that goal. We know we can make this dream come true and we are totally prepared to host the 2020 Games.

“Our bid meets all the IOC’s rules and regulations in full. The IOC framework is 100-percent compatible with Spanish legislation, and each and every one of the Spanish institutions taking part have guaranteed that the Olympic Charter and the Host City Contract will be observed and complied with at every level. Furthermore, Madrid 2020, the City of Madrid and the COE have been working closely with the IOC throughout.”

Future development

Botella also explained the two bodies of the Madrid 2020 Foundation and the Madrid 2020 Corporation would make up the Bid Committee moving forward before eventually becoming the Olympic Development Office and the Madrid Organising Committee.

The Olympic Development Office would be formed in part by the Spanish government, the Autonomous Region of Madrid and Madrid City Council and would be responsible for the development and organisation of the venues and infrastructures, 78% of which is in place. Officials forming part of the Olympic Development Office will also sit on the Madrid Organising Committee with representatives of the Olympic committees and the Spanish members of the IOC.

The Garrigues’ law firm’s Felix Plaza stated the bid’s fiscal and legal framework would provide for the compliance with and implementation of the pledges made by public and private bodies, and that this legal protection would preserve the rights awarded to Olympic sponsors.

Keywords · Madrid 2020 · Ana Botella · Jose Ignacio Wert · Ignacio Gonzalez · Alejandro Blanco

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