Sydney (AFP) – Australian state Victoria said Wednesday it was in exclusive talks to host the 2026 Commonwealth Games.
It is planned to hold events across Victoria, whose capital city is Melbourne, if it secures the multisports games, said the state’s premier Daniel Andrews.
“Victoria is Australia’s sporting state, and, if awarded, the 2026 Commonwealth Games would demonstrate to the world a new way to deliver the competition,” Andrews said.
“We would hope to have the majority of events in our regional cities to display the best of Victoria, create jobs and housing and infrastructure that will deliver for the long term.”
Victoria last hosted the Commonwealth Games in 2006 when events were focused on the state capital Melbourne.
The state said it had signed a “heads of agreement” for exclusive negotiations on hosting the competition again in 2026.
The agreement was signed with the Commonwealth Games Federation and Commonwealth Games Australia.
“Victoria is one of the world’s greatest sporting states and there is no doubt it has the venues, infrastructure and people to stage a world class edition of the Games,” said Commonwealth Games Federation president Louise Martin.
Australia’s Gold Coast in Queensland was home in 2018 to the last edition of the “Friendly Games”, as the Commonwealth Games are called, attracting more than 4,000 athletes from its 54-nation members, almost all of whom are former territories of the British Empire.
The 2022 Commonwealth Games are due to be held in Birmingham, England, from July 28 to August 8.