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Budapest a 'strong contender' to host 2024 Olympics, says IOC boss

Budapest's existing sports infrastructure stands it in good stead to win the right to host the 2024 Olympic Games, International Olympic Committee (IOC) boss Thomas Bach said on Tuesday.

Last year, the IOC announced an overhaul in its Games bidding process through the 2020 Agenda recommendations aimed at reigning in spending, after exorbitant costs incurred by former host cities Beijing and London.

 Budapest a strong contender to host 2024 Olympics, says IOC boss

Performers recreate the fifth Olympic ring that didn't open in the opening ceremony. AP

The reforms also aimed to encourage smaller countries to join the race.

"Budapest is a strong contender for the organisation of the 2024 Summer Olympics and it is clear that Hungary, like its capital, nicely match the 2020 Agenda reforms," Bach told reporters during a visit to Budapest.

"The message is that countries like Hungary, cities like Budapest, can also have the opportunity to organise the Olympics.

"Budapest's existing sports infrastructure and beauty... can really enhance the competitions."

The Hungarian capital is bidding against Paris, Rome and Los Angeles, after Hamburg pulled out of the race last month.

The IOC is set to make a decision in September 2017.

Hosting the Olympics could generate 1,100 billion forints (3.5 billion euros, $4.1 billion dollars) in revenues for Budapest, well above the 774 billion forints in required investments.

One of the world's top swimming nations, Hungary is already hosting the World Swimming Championships in 2017.

AFP

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Updated Date: Dec 15, 2015 20:44:50 IST