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Stockholm city government deal threatens 2026 Olympics bid

International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach speaks at press conference in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Thursday, Oct. 4, 2018.
International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach speaks at press conference in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Thursday, Oct. 4, 2018. AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko

Stockholm’s bid to host the 2026 Olympics is at risk just three days after the IOC formally approved the city among three candidates.

Swedish media report a new coalition deal to run Stockholm’s city government, between a centre-right alliance and environmentalists, requires no taxpayer funding for a Winter Games.

If Stockholm drops out, the IOC will be left with Calgary and the combined Italian bid of Milan and Cortina d’Ampezzo. A June vote is scheduled.

READ MORE: Calgary councillor, mayor calls Olympic plebiscite without cost-sharing details ‘unfair’

Calgary’s bid faces a Nov. 13 referendum, and full government support is not guaranteed in Italy.

Amid widespread public concern at Olympic hosting costs, IOC vice-president Juan Antonio Samaranch Jr. acknowledged this week: “We have to make a huge effort in explaining ourselves better.”

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READ MORE: A roadmap to Calgary hosting the 2026 Olympics