Malaysia Ponders Olympics Bid, But First Seeks Technical Expertise, Government Backing
Amateur Swimming Union of Malaysia Secretary Edwin Chong said that Malaysia "needs to develop a full range of technical expertise and have full Government backing before it can make a serious bid to host the Olympic Games," according to THE STAR. Chong added that Malaysia "could consider itself ready to stage the Olympics, at the least, 15 years from now." Chong said that "aside from the infrastructure, the country must have the technical competency" for the IOC to consider Malaysia. He added that the experience of hosting a successful Commonwealth Games in '98 "was not enough." Chong: "The Commonwealth Games consists of only 16 sports. If the Government really wants to try for the Olympics (with at least 28 sports), they must provide unconditional backing to let the respective sports associations make a bid for the world championships first" (THE STAR, 9/16). THE STAR's Daniel Khoo wrote hosting a major sporting event such as the Olympics "is not only a difficult task, but is also a capital-intensive exercise in its own right." RAM Holdings group Chief Economist Yeah Kim Leng said, "Hosting an international event of this scale would require a lot of capital upfront, not forgetting the period before the event where money, time and effort would be needed to develop local sporting talents." Yeah added that such a huge expenditure, usually borne by the government, "would have big multiplier effects on the economy, and the host country would usually see almost immediate spillover effects for a certain number of years until the event date" (THE STAR, 9/16).