Government of Canada

Government of Canada

November 30, 2006 12:32 ET

Canada, Nova Scotia, and Halifax Regional Municipality Announce Support for Halifax Bid for the 2014 Commonwealth Games

HALIFAX, NOVA SCOTIA--(CCNMatthews - Nov. 30, 2006) - At an event today at historic Pier 21, the governments of Canada, Nova Scotia, and the Halifax Regional Municipality announced funding to support Halifax's bid to host the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

The Honourable Peter Van Loan, President of the Queen's Privy Council for Canada, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, and Minister for Sport, announced a commitment of up to $400 million. This includes an immediate, direct contribution of up to $3.5 million to the 2014 Halifax Commonwealth Games Candidate City Society through Sport Canada's Hosting Program. These initial funds will support the international bid phase of the process. The remaining funds will help offset the operations, capital, legacy, and federal essential services costs associated with staging the 2014 Commonwealth Games, in the event that the bid is successful.

"I am pleased to announce that Canada's new Government will contribute up to $400 million to the staging of the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Halifax. We are all supporting Halifax 2014 because when Halifax wins, we all win," said Minister Van Loan. "If the bid is successful, the Government of Canada will be a proud partner and honour our financial commitment to help stage the Games. Hosting international sport events provides Canada with direct sport development opportunities across a broad range of government priorities and objectives."

At the same event, the Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA), announced that the Agency would provide up to $2 million in support for economic and business development opportunities associated with attracting the Games and strengthening local expertise in attracting major events.

"Halifax is gaining a reputation as an exceptional host city for international events," said Minister MacKay. "This investment will increase our ability to build trade and investment connections with Commonwealth countries as we look forward to celebrating Halifax's success on decision-day for the 2014 Games."

"I am pleased to announce that Nova Scotia will contribute $3.5 million to the bid budget," said Premier Rodney MacDonald. "The Commonwealth Games are a unique opportunity to showcase Nova Scotia on the international stage. I remain committed to ensuring that we build the right-sized Games for this province, while hosting an event that will make the entire country proud."

In December 2005, Halifax was chosen by Commonwealth Games Canada to represent Canada in the international competition to stage the 2014 Commonwealth Games. Since that time, the province of Nova Scotia has been working with partners at the municipal and federal levels to ensure the 2014 Bid Society is well supported and able to develop a strong and fiscally responsible bid. In addition to the $3.5-million cash contribution, Nova Scotia will support the bid through the dedication of provincial employees, supplies, and office space.

"As Governments, we have a responsibility to ensure the Commonwealth Games leave a lasting legacy across the province," said Barry Barnet, Nova Scotia Minister of Health Promotion and Protection. "These Games will help to make Nova Scotians healthier over the long-term by creating infrastructure that can and will benefit residents of this province. Today's announcement takes us one step closer to building that legacy."

"Hosting the 2014 Commonwealth Games offers a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to invest in a lasting legacy of infrastructure and community and economic development for our region, so I am pleased to confirm Halifax Regional Municipality's contribution of $3 million towards the bid," said Mayor Peter Kelly. "HRM will also support the bid by providing expertise and other services as needed. We are committed to a legacy that is fiscally responsible, so that future generations can enjoy the benefits of hosting the Games, such as world-class sport facilities and programs, affordable housing units, improved transit systems, and economic growth."

The Games are expected to generate roughly $2 billion in overall economic activity for the region, including millions spent on accommodations, food, and shopping by athletes, officials, and other visitors, and design and construction jobs for years to come.

"The investment made today by our primary funding partners is not only a financial contribution-it is a tangible commitment to realizing the full potential of hosting the 2014 Commonwealth Games for Halifax, Nova Scotia, and Canada," said Fred MacGillivray, president and chair of Halifax 2014. "We thank all our government partners for their ongoing commitment and confidence in our collective effort to host the 2014 Commonwealth Games."

The international bid phase will occur in 2006-2007 with the deadline for formal application to the Commonwealth Games Federation set for May 9, 2007. The successful bid city will be announced in Sri Lanka on November 9, 2007, at the Commonwealth Games Federation's Annual General Assembly.

Fact Sheet

2014 Commonwealth Games Bid

- Every four years, 71 nations come together to celebrate the Commonwealth's shared values, traditions, and language. The 2014 Games, featuring 17 sports, will be an important stepping stone for aspiring Olympians and Paralympians.

- Canada has hosted four editions of the Commonwealth Games: Hamilton in 1930, Vancouver in 1954, Edmonton in 1978, and Victoria in 1994. The 1994 Commonwealth Games in Victoria left a rich legacy of facilities and programming that will benefit current and future generations of Canadian athletes.

- If Halifax's bid is successful, the Government of Canada will be a proud partner with a commitment of up to $396.5 million to assist in the staging of the Games. The Department of Canadian Heritage, through Sport Canada, has already provided a direct financial contribution of up to $3.5 million to the 2014 Halifax Commonwealth Games Candidate City Society. Through this total contribution of $400 million, the Government of Canada will support initiatives in the areas of international relations, finance and administration, communications, and venue development.

- Hosting major international sport events in Canada provides our athletes and coaches with valuable training and competition experience and results in significant economic and social benefits.

- The international bid phase will occur in 2006-2007 with the deadline for formal application to the Commonwealth Games Federation set for May 9, 2007. The successful bid city will be announced in Sri Lanka on November 9, 2007, at the Commonwealth Games Federation's Annual General Assembly. (The Commonwealth Games Federation holds the international franchise for the Commonwealth Games.)

- Halifax is competing against Glasgow, Scotland, and Abuja, Nigeria, to be the host city. Canada's experience and reputation as an outstanding host nation for major multi-sport events bodes well for its potential success in the bid process.

- Commonwealth Games Canada (CGC) is the organization responsible for hosting the Commonwealth Games in Canada. In December 2005, Commonwealth Games Canada selected Halifax as the candidate city for the international phase of the bid.

- Commonwealth Games Canada is the lead organization in Canada for International Development Through Sport. The Department of Canadian Heritage provides funding to CGC for its International Development Through Sport activities.

- The XVIII Commonwealth Games were held in Melbourne, Australia, from March 15 to 26, 2006. Approximately 4500 athletes from 71 nations and territories participated in 16 sports. In addition, 12 events for athletes with disabilities were integrated into the general Games competition schedule. Canada finished in third place, with 86 medals.

Contact Information

  • Office of the President of the Queen's Privy Council for
    Canada, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, and
    Minister for Sport
    Gary Toft, Director of Communications
    613-943-1833
    or
    Canadian Heritage
    Donald Boulanger
    A/Chief, Media Relations
    819-994-9101
    or
    Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
    David Harrigan
    Senior Communications Officer
    902-426-4238
    or
    Nova Scotia Health Promotion and Protection
    Tracey Taweel
    Communications Director
    902-424-4410
    or
    Halifax 2014 Commonwealth Games Bid Committee
    Suzanne Fougere
    Communications and Partner Relations Officer
    902-490-4474
    or
    Halifax Regional Municipality
    Mayor's Office
    Jodi Reid
    Community Liaison Coordinator
    902-490-4078