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09 February 2015, 12:20

Belarus, Poland to bid for 2021 Winter Universiade

MINSK, 9 February (BelTA) – At the 2015 Winter Universiade in Spanish Granada Deputy Education Minister of Belarus Viktor Yakzhik and Director of the National Youth Physical Education and Sport Center Valentina Balyabo met with First Vice President of the International University Sports Federation (FISU) Oleg Matytsin and FISU Secretary General Eric Saintrond, BelTA learnt from the press service of the Belarusian youth sports center.

The parties discussed the possibility of Belarus to host world student championships in 2018 and the 2021 Winter Universiade.

According to Viktor Yakzhik, Belarus has a modern sports base to host competitions in the Winter Universiade five compulsory sports (cross-country skiing, biathlon, ice hockey, figure skating and short track) as well as two optional sports (speed skating, ski orienteering). In this respect there was made a proposal to hold the rest of compulsory sports (Alpine skiing, snowboard, curling) in the neighboring Poland.

At the World University Championships in Canoe Sprint in Zaslavl in August 2014 during the meeting between FISU representatives and the Belarus President's aide in physical education, sport and tourism development a preliminary agreement was reached with the President of the European University Sports Association (EUSA) on the possibility of Poland's hosting of the Winter Universiade jointly with Belarus. The Foreign Ministers of Belarus and Poland plan to meet to discuss the issue. Representatives of the two countries are expected to conduct a number of business talks to prepare necessary documents for the ministers' meeting.

FISU Secretary General Eric Saintrond noted at the meeting in Granada that following the visit to Minsk in August 2014 representatives of the International University Sports Federation had no doubt in Belarus' possibility to host the Universiade. According to Eric Saintrond, the practice of holding the competitions in two countries was first used in 2003 when Italy and Austria hosted the Winter Universiade.

The parties also discussed the financial aspects of the competitions. Educational and media projects are also of high importance for the Universiade.

Following the official talks in Granada the Belarusian delegation met with Polish representatives. The Polish delegation approved the idea of hosting the 2021 Winter Universiade together with Belarus. The parties agreed to visit sport facilities that can be used during the competitions.

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