Olympics 2008 News
IOC team to meet chancellor; minister and survey support Munich bid
By Sven Busch Mar 3, 2011, 13:44 GMT
Munich - The new German Interior Minister and public opinion voiced their support as Olympians continued their evaluation tour of Munich's bid for the 2018 Winter Games ahead of a meeting later Thursday with Chancellor Angela Merkel.
Hans-Peter Friedrich described sport as very important just hours after being formally appointed and will meet the International Olympic Committee commission on Friday.
Merkel was due to lobby before the 11-strong IOC delegation led by Sweden's Gunilla Lindberg at a dinner in Munich.
Munich is bidding for the 2018 Games along with Annecy, France, and Pyeongchang, South Korea.
The evaluation commission report is scheduled to be released in June. It is regarded as technical assessment of each bidder to help IOC members who will elect the 2018 host on July 6 in Durban.
There have been local protests against Munich's campaign, mainly in the proposed ski event site of Garmisch-Partenkirchen, which opponents rate is too small to host an event of such magnitude. A group of farmers in the ski resort are also refusing to give up land for events.
The IOC team met with opponents on Tuesday but a survey by the YouGov company on behalf of the German Press Agency dpa revealed on Thursday that 73 percent of Germans want the Games to come to Munich.
The survey, conducted among 1,006 Germans Monday to Wednesday, said that 15 per cent oppose Games in the city which hosted the 1972 Summer Olympics.
Support was highest at 76 per cent in the 25-34 age group while 16-24-year-olds had a 73 per cent support rate.
However, 90 per cent of the surveyed reject a special tax to hold the Games and 43 per cent believe that Olympics are not possible without some intervention in nature.
The IOC will also conduct its own survey as part of the evaluation. The evaluation team arrived in Germany on Monday and the tour ends on Friday.
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