Chinese president meets IOC president

From: Xinhua Updated: 2014-02-07 17:52
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SOCHI, Russia, Feb. 6 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping met Thursday evening President of the International Olympic Committee Thomas Bach in Russia's Sochi, host city of the 22nd Winter Olympic Games.

The two sides met during a reception held by Bach for the distinguished guests who will attend the opening ceremony of the games on Friday.

Xi said his trip to Sochi for the games' opening ceremony evinces the Chinese government's strong support to the Olympics. He then wished the 22nd Winter Olympics a complete success.

After Beijing successfully hosted the Summer Olympic Games in 2008, it is now joining hands with proposed co-host city Zhangjiakou to bid for the winter games in 2022.

The bid will promote winter sports among the Chinese people and further carry forward the Olympic spirit, the Chinese leader noted.

During their talks, Xi also invited Bach to China for the 2nd Youth Olympic Games to be held in Nanjing, capital city of east China's Jiangsu Province, in August 2014.

Significant progress has been made in China's sports cause over these years with many excellent results achieved by Chinese athletes in international competitions, Xi said, while admitting that China is still weak in some sports.

China will further improve competitive sports and continue to push forward mass sports, so as to improve itself to be a stronger sports power, he added.

On his part, Bach expressed his gratitude for Xi's attendance to the opening ceremony of the 22nd Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, adding that China's successful hosting of the 2008 Beijing games has made significant contributions to the Olympics.

Bach felt certain that China will do better in winter sports through the 2022 Winter Olympic Games bid. He also expressed satisfaction for the preparation work of the Nanjing Youth Olympic Games, saying that he looks forward to attending the opening ceremony of the upcoming games.

Lauding China's sports achievements, Bach noted that China will definitely realize its sports power dream.

During the reception, Xi also talked with state leaders of some countries, many IOC members and leading officials of national Olympic committees of some countries.

Xi arrived here earlier on Thursday. The three-day visit is his first foreign trip this year.

Sochi Olympics opens on Friday. Nearly 3,000 athletes from 87 countries and regions will compete for 98 gold medals in 15 disciplines across seven sports.

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