Durban is South Africa’s Most Likely 2020 Games Bid Candidate

April 11, 2011

According to South Africa’s National Olympic Committee (NOC) president Gideon Sam, Durban is being lined up as the nation’s candidate for the 2020 Olympics due to the “economies of scale” presented by the city.

Durban is now the most likely candidate, with Port Elizabeth and Johannesburg also having expressed an interest in staging the Games, though the South African government’s approval is required before the NOC can submit a bid ahead of the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) September 1 deadline.

Sam told the Associated Press: “The economies of scale will tip it in the direction of Durban but that final decision has to be taken.”

South Africa, which has never hosted the Olympics, has targeted the 2020 Games after last year’s FIFA World Cup in the country. “If we don’t win on the Olympics, there is 2022 for the Commonwealth Games,” Sam added.

The Italian capital of Rome is the only city to officially enter the running for the 2020 Games, although Madrid, Dubai, Doha, Istanbul and Tokyo have been linked with a bid.