Two South American capitals – Santiago, Chile and Lima, Peru – are neck-and-neck in the battle to host the 2019 Pan-American Games, the Chilean government’s secretary general, Cecilia Perez has stated.
Perez spoke in Toronto, Canada, where the Pan-American Sports Organization (PASO) is holding its general assembly session, during which it will decide which city gets to host the Pan- American and Parapan-American Games (for athletes with special needs).
“I feel that, along with Lima, we are the two candidacies with the greatest support, although Ciudad Bolivar (Venezuela) has gained some strength,” said the Perez.
Chile, which has never hosted the Pan-American Games, is vying for a chance to host the event in 2019, as is Ciudad Bolivar in Venezuela, La Punta in Argentina and Lima in Peru.
Perez said that she and former Chilean tennis player and sports ambassador Fernando Gonzalez, had the opportunity to meet with most of PASO’s members in Barbados, and “since then and until now Chile’s candidacy has strengthened.”
Factors working in Chile’s favor include “the government’s support for the Olympic Committee, investment in sports infrastructure, and Chile’s political stability, because independently of the government, there is support for economic activity and stability,” she added.
The city that garners 29 or more votes, out of a possible 44 votes, will get to host the 2019 Pan-American Games.