Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has revived a bid for Brisbane and the state’s southeast to host the 2032 Olympics and Paralympics.
The premier says she will convene her 2032 taskforce in the new year and has sent a letter to International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach asking for an update on the Tokyo Games.
The 2032 bid had been a lower priority during the pandemic, but Ms Palaszczuk met with IOC vice-president John Coates on Monday morning to discuss the changing situation.
“It’s very important from a Queensland point of view that we get to see what happens with the Tokyo Olympics in this post-COVID world,” she told reporters on Monday.
“And hopefully with the positive signs of the vaccine, things could be very positive in the future. So we’re here to keep an open mind.”
Mr Coates said Prime Minister Scott Morrison had invited him and Mr Bach to a private meeting during his official visit to Japan two weeks ago.
The IOC vice-president said during those talks Mr Morrison was very supportive of Brisbane and southeast Queensland’s bid for the 2032 Games.
Mr Coates said the IOC was in continuous dialogue with four or five other cities about the games, so it was important for Ms Palaszczuk to indicate she wanted to move forward with the bid.
“With COVID under control in this country largely, that it is time for everyone to reaffirm their commitment to these games, and I think that’s going to be very well received,” he told reporters on Monday.
Southeast Queensland mayors also reaffirmed their backing for the 2032 bid, but warned they needed to bring an upgrade to critical transport infrastructure in the region.
The Council of Mayors chair and Brisbane Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner also met with Mr Coates on Monday.
“The SEQ Mayors are mindful not to get carried away with the hype of an Olympic Games and to ensure a Games delivers tangible and lasting transport legacies for South East Queensland,” Mr Schrinner said in a statement.
“I don’t think anyone wants to see an Olympic Games delivered just for the sake of it – particularly not the mayors of South East Queensland.”