MADRID, Feb. 24 (Xinhua) -- Olympic Broadcasting Services (OBS) World Broadcaster Meeting (WBM) was held here on Monday to discuss the coverage of the Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Games, attended by 172 representatives from the International Olympic Committee, OBS and Rights Holding Broadcasters (RHB) around the world.
After the World Broadcaster Briefing a year ago, the WBM marks another important milestone in Beijing's progress towards its second Olympic Games, which is less than two years away.
"The meeting is extremely important not only for the Olympic movement but also for the entire sports community in the world. Beijing 2022's aim is to get the best possible stage for the Olympic Games. You are the most important part of the transmission of Olympic values. Without you the communication will be blocked," said IOC Vice President Juan Antonio Samaranch Jr.
"Remember that the last time we went to Beijing for the Games in 2008, millions of people through your good work were able to follow the Games. The distribution at that time was extremely successful. There is a long road to go to Beijing in 2022 and for all of us to make the delivery very successful. We are very confident that our team and colleagues from Beijing in 2022. They have the experience; they have the people," the Chairman of the Coordination Committee for Beijing 2022 added.
During the meeting, host OBS informed the rights holders of the broadcast and operational plans for Beijing 2022 including Olympic Channel news service, multi-channel distribution, digital content service.
Co-host Beijing 2022 organizing committee attended the meeting online at their Shougang headquarters in Beijing. Ten departments of the organizers reported updates on matters of venue and infrastructure construction, media operation; accommodation; accreditation; transport and so on, and discuss any requirements that the RHBs may have with regards to logistics, security, financial and others.
"The preparations are on track and very well advanced. You would see how much the development of the venue, the organizational structure and all the logistical things have been done. It's an important meeting which for many of you signals the start of the preparations for the Games," OBS CEO Yiannis Exarchos said. "Also please allow me on behalf of all of you to express our solidarity to Beijing 2022 and their government [during the novel coronavirus outbreak]."
Zhang Jiandong, Vice Mayor of Beijing and Executive Vice President of Beijing 2022 expressed appreciation to involved parties for their understandings that the meeting was relocated to Madrid due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
"China has been taking effective measures to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus and won praises from the World Health Organization and many countries [and regions]. We are confident that we have the capability and will overcome the epidemic," he continued.
"We will try our best to push forward the preparations for Beijing 2022 amid the fight against the virus and make sure the preparatory works are done in time and up to standard," he vowed.
According to Zhang, all competition venues for Beijing 2022 will be completed by the end of 2020 and operation teams will be established to get ready for test events. The Main Media Center will be handed over to OBS in July 2021 after the construction finishes. In 2020, Beijing 2022 plans to appeal for global slogan proposals and launch the theme song this year while starting to prepare for the torch relay.