SAO PAULO (Reuters) - Time is of the essence if Brazil is to host a successful Olympic Games in 2016, the International Olympic Committee President said on Tuesday.
“I am sure that over the next few months and years we will see a great dynamism in the preparations because we know that time is key if we are to make these games a success,” Thomas Bach said after meeting with President Dilma Rousseff in the capital Brasilia.
The 2016 Games will be held in Rio de Janeiro, the first time they will take place South America.
Bach’s warning came on the day that soccer’s governing body FIFA threatened to exclude Curitiba as one of the host cities of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
FIFA gave the southern city until February 18 to prove it will be ready to host the four matches it is due to stage. The stadium is one of the 12 proposed venues, only six of which are ready.
“After this meeting with the president and after hearing her strong commitment to the success of the games I am even more confident than before that we will have an exciting and brilliant Olympic games in (two) years time,” Bach said on his first trip to Brazil since being elected IOC head in September.
Writing by Andrew Downie, Editing by Ed Osmond