The Chinese city of Hangzhou has been ratified as the host of the 2022 Asian Games multi-sport event, while Randhir Singh has stepped down as secretary general of the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA).
Hangzhou was standing as the only candidate to stage the event, with the host contract signed during the OCA’s general assembly in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan. China hosted the Asian Games in Beijing in 1990 and Guangzhou in 2010. Beijing will also stage the winter Olympic Games in 2022.
The next edition of the Games will take place in 2018 in Jakarta, Indonesia. Hanoi in Vietnam had been scheduled to hold the event in 2019 before withdrawing due to financial reasons. The Games in Indonesia will take place a year earlier than scheduled to avoid clashes with national elections.
“I know it's the only candidate, but also it has achieved a lot of our goals,” OCA president Sheikh Ahmad al-Fahad al-Sabah said, according to the Associated Press news agency.
Hangzhou Mayor Zhong Hongming added: “The Asian Games will play a very big role in the development of the city. We promise that the Games will be hosted at the highest level.”
Meanwhile Singh will not be replaced as secretary general of the OCA. The Indian announced his intention to step down at the OCA’s executive board meeting before the general assembly. He will now serve as the body’s honorary life vice-president, having served for 24 years.