100 Days to Winter Olympics

By Muhammad Asif Noor | Gwadar Pro Oct 28, 2021

ISLAMABAD, Oct.28 (Gwadar Pro) - The Winter Olympic Games are scheduled to be held in Beijing next year, from February 4 to 20, 2022. Beijing will soon become a Double Olympic City, to host both Winter and Summer Olympic games in the history of the Olympics. The countdown of 100 days elevates confidence, pride and pressure not only for the participants but also for the hosting nation, China.

Earlier, China hosted the Winter Olympics in 2008 that has made a benchmark in the history of the Olympic Games and led to the elevation of the Chinese ranking on the global stage. As the Winter Olympic Games draw near, preparations are near its completion in Beijing to host international athletes. Apart from the administrative and organization measures, China has made enormous preparations to contest in the Winter Olympics as Chinese athletes will take part in every game of the Olympics.

The mega event is happening in the midst of COVID-19, like the Tokyo Summer Olympics, China is expected to take extra administrative and precautionary measures to arrange such an important global event. With Chinese experience of hosting mega events, the Winter Olympic Games will be brilliant to the par excellence that the world will remember.

Both the government and the people of China attached great importance to the Winter Olympics as the mega event brings the lime light to the global Chinese reach and soft power that has tectonic magnanimity on the global scale. This reflects how China put a strong and solemn emphasis on physical and mental health and how China is supporting the “green, open and clean and inclusive” Olympic games. In the history of the games, this will further set the higher standards of hosting such magnanimous events.

For this special event, a unique design of medals for athletes has been revealed, namely Tong Xin, meaning ‘Together as one’. The design reflects ancient Chinese jade concentric circles with depiction of Olympic circles. The Beijing Olympics Organizing Committee (BOCOG) adhered to splendid principles of streamlined, safe and marvelous games. There has been a clear policy on COVID-19 prevention protocols i.e. the non-vaccinated athletes would remain quarantined for 21 days.

The vaccinated athletes would remain in a bio bubble for their own safety. Additionally, Beijing has decided to open the Olympic venues for spectators only from China while denying viewership to international audiences in the sporting avenues.  IOC has agreed with China to implement this decision in wider public health interests. It is the follow up of the Summer Olympics 2020 Tokyo which held its events without a popular audience due to Covid-restrictions.

The opening ceremony of the Olympics is scheduled for Feb 4, 2022 at Beijing’s National Stadium, a Bird’s Nest. This event will make Beijing the first city to host both winter and Summer Olympics. Beijing has prepared well for this mega event and brought already established facilities into use for ice sports, i.e. the venues from Winter Olympics 2008. The vicinity areas of Yanqing and Zhangjiakou will host snowboarding, alpine skiing, cross country and ski jumping. These destinations are outside Beijing where fast-speed railways will be used to travel. BOCOG has created the Covid-free bubble around all the gaming venues.

In addition to covid-19 precautions, China has cautiously completed the preparation of sporting avenues. Beijing does not fall short of any commitments to complete the preparations beforehand. All of the competition avenues are completed where test games have been played to demonstrate the operational readiness of Sports Avenue. Moreover, China has set up health facilities with first aid equipment, eating areas, sanitation sections, rest areas and other necessary goods and services in the vicinity of sporting avenues.

Special attention has been made to promote the event for the media coverage and live broadcast of the events from stadiums to the global audiences. China has made special arrangements for the foreign media to cover the events. This is a wonderful and timely initiative to reveal to the world about the spectacular events and their charm.

The organization and administration for the upcoming Olympic Games has been meticulously planned by IOC and China. It is decided to host all the games in a bubble created from January 23rd to March 13, 2020 which will engulf all the stadiums, competition avenues, catering and accommodation for participants. All the staff and athletes will not be allowed to move outside this bubble while the close mobility will remain limited to games, practice, and work related activities.

Only vaccinated athletes and supporting staff will be given entry to the bubble with justifiable proof of vaccination while the non-vaccinated athletes would be required to arrive early for 21 day quarantine before entry into the bubble. IOC and the administering body of China will undertake measures to daily check the entire participants as a precaution.

Sports play a critical role in bridging the relationship between nations. Pakistan and China also cooperate together in sports, especially through the opportunities for Pakistani athletes to perform excellent at the upcoming brilliant Olympic Games in Beijing. This provides the athletes an international experience and sports organisation opportunity for sharing of knowledge about such important events, which will uplift Pakistan’s sports industry at the same time. The games are also offering Pakistan’s famous sports manufacturing industry the opportunity to build their business linkages on a global scale.

The writer is Founder Friends of Belt and Road Forum.

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