The Netherlands backs out of hosting 2019 European Games

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Dutch authorities have declined to host the Europe-wide sports competition, saying it would cost too much, only weeks after their bid was accepted. The inaugural 2015 Games are set to open on Friday in Baku, Azerbaijan.

In a surprise move Wednesday, the Dutch government dropped its successful bid to host the 2019 European Games, saying there was no guarantee it would draw enough high quality athletes.

“The risks for the authorities involved are too big when it comes to covering financial setbacks,” officials said in a statement.

The national and regional governments in the Netherlands were unable to earmark the money which the Dutch Olympic Committee asked for, according to Sports Minister Edith Schippers.

“The sum requested of 57.5 million euros ($65.02 million) for the 2019 European Games is, in this time of scarcity, a burden on the resources that the authorities have at their disposal,” she said in a letter to the parliament.

The country was only awarded the Games less then a month ago. Although six candidates were interested in hosting the 2019 sport manifestation, according to European officials, the Dutch bid was the only serious one remaining.

The Dutch Olympic Committee said it was “a great missed opportunity for the Netherlands.”

Read Deutsche Welle

Photo by Kudosmedia

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