Dubai keen on bidding for Olympics: Officials

Dubai: The Gulf Arab sheikdom has plans to expand its existing sports facilities across the emirate and eyes submitting a bid to host the Olympic Games.

Ali Omar, the director of Dubai Sports Council (DSC) sports development department, said that submitting a candidature as host city to the international Olympic committee (IOC) was still on the agenda, reports Xinhua.

"Hosting the Olympics is a dream. We hope to submit such a bid within the next eight years, God willing," he said.

The next two Olympic Games will be held in 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and in 2020 in Tokyo, Japan. The bidding process for the host city for 2024 has not yet started. Berlin has expressed interest in bidding for the Games in 10 years.

Omar said that Qatar did a good job to win the FIFA World Cup in 2022.

"Qatar`s move has brought the world`s attention to professional sports in the whole Gulf Arab region," he added.

In December of 2006, Qatar`s capital Doha hosted the 15th Asian Games, a first for any Arab city.

While Dubai managed to attract numerous international sports competitions in various disciplines like tennis (Dubai Duty Free Grand Prix), table tennis (GAC GROUP 2013 ITTF World Tour Grand Finals), swimming or diving, a major event is yet to take place.

With the Dubai Sports City, Dubai harbours a complete district that provides football and cricket stadiums as well as sports academies on a surface of 50 million square feet.

Bringing the Asian Cup to Dubai would also be an option, said Ahmed Al Sharif, the DSC secretary general.

He briefed the media on Dubai`s achievements in hosting professional sports events and in enhancing sport facilities and events on health for the general public.

Al-Sharif said that Dubai has built a number of high-tech stadiums, and more stadiums and facilities would be needed across the emirate for a bid for a major global sports competition.

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