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Lausanne 2020 points to commercial backing ahead of Youth Olympics decision

Lausanne 2020 has outlined the extensive commercial backing it has received for its bid to host the 2020 winter Youth Olympic Games, as the process nears its conclusion.

The Swiss city will learn whether it has defeated a rival claim from Brasov, Romania at the International Olympic Committee’s 128th Session in Kuala Lumpur on July 31.

Through an initiative from the Lausanne Region Economy (ERL) umbrella organisation, Lausanne 2020 said it has attracted support from more than 3,000 local companies. These include financial groups Banque Cantonale Vaudoise, Credit Suisse and Zurich Assurance.

Christian Masserey, general secretary of the ERL, said: “It is in the interest of the region and its economy that ERL have decided to set up a support committee for the bid of the City of Lausanne and the State of Vaud for the Youth Games. Such sporting events have an international reach and therefore huge potential for the regional economy. Thus it was natural for us that the essential components of our local industry mobilised en masse to support the Lausanne 2020 bid.”

Denis Pittet, general secretary of Lausanne 2020, added: “To know that the Youth Olympic Games are a project than can truly mobilise our region’s economy is terrific. We now have to share this enthusiasm with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in a few days in Kuala Lumpur. If the verdict is in favour of Lausanne 2020, our ambition is to capture this occasion for the youth, for sport, for the economy.”

The Austrian city of Innsbruck hosted the inaugural winter Youth Olympic Games in 2012, with the Norwegian town of Lillehammer due to stage the next edition in 2016.