The 117th IOC Session marks the half-way point of President ROGGE's first term as IOC President, and he took the opportunity of this final EB press conference to reflect upon his term so far, as well as the previous quadrennial. The President commented on the two excellent Games that he has experienced as President; namely Salt Lake City and Athens, and highlighted the healthy state of the IOC's finances, with reserves now running at US$ 244 million, which would allow the IOC to survive for four years should the Olympic Games not take place.
The President commented on the increases that the TOP marketing programme has seen in recent years, with TOP revenues up around 30% to over US$ 800 million already projected for TOP VI (2005-2008). TOP VII (covering the Games in 2010 and 2012) currently has five partners signed up, with ATOS Origin being the latest, and ten partners in total are expected. President ROGGE then went on to discuss TV rights, with the USA, European and Canadian markets already having been sold to General Electric and NBC; the European Broadcast Union; and Bell Globemedia/Rogers Media respectively, for the Olympic Games in 2010-2012. These contracts have all seen increases of well over 30% on the previous broadcast contracts.
As the IOC strives to control the cost, size and complexity of the Games, President ROGGE informed the gathered media that the implementation of the Olympic Games Study Commission (OGSC) recommendations would continue, and that of the 117 OGSC recommendations, 40% were currently implemented, with the remaining recommendations to be in place by 2012.
With the 117th IOC Session starting tomorrow evening, the President also covered the two key votes of the coming week. As regards the 2012 election, he told the assembled media that the IOC has a choice between five cities, all of whom are capable of hosting excellent Olympic Games. As for the review of the Olympic Programme, President Rogge reminded the audience of the philosophy behind that process; that is, the need to have a systematic review of the menu of sports that make up the programme, so as to ensure the Olympic Games remain as inspirational and excellent tomorrow as they are today.
After today's reports to the EB by the Chairmen of each of the future Olympic Games Coordination Commissions, President ROGGE gave a brief overview of the Organizing Committees' progress. Torino 2006 is moving ahead well and has a good team in place; preparations for Beijing 2008 are progressing smoothly; and Vancouver 2010 has begun extremely well. The President also mentioned the improved support that the IOC was offering to the Organizing Committees to help them become more efficient at hosting the Games.
The President summed up his first four years by commenting, 'The past is the past; and it has gone extremely well. But I prefer to look to the future and to the good things that I believe lie ahead of us. The Olympic Movement is in excellent shape and this makes me a happy man.'