Lausanne, May 9, 2014: The President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Thomas Bach, today welcomed the President of the Swiss Confederation, Didier Burkhalter, for a one-hour meeting at the IOC headquarters in Lausanne before inviting him to visit the newly renovated Olympic Museum.
The two leaders discussed a number of items of common interest, including the long ties between the Olympic Movement and Switzerland that have led many sports organisations to set up home in the country, and the continued presence of the IOC in Switzerland.
The leaders discussed the future of the Olympic Movement, and President Bach outlined the progress made on “Olympic Agenda 2020”, a strategic plan for the future which will be finalized by the end of the year. They also assessed the highly successful Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, with the Swiss President having just returned from meeting President Putin in Moscow, where he led the OSCE delegation.
“The ties between Switzerland and the IOC are based on great cooperation in the past. We feel at home here in Switzerland, and we certainly hope that it will be possible for this to continue, and this is a sentiment echoed by many of our partners from International Federations and other sports organisations who followed the IOC’s lead and set up their headquarters in Switzerland.”
Discussions also touched upon the celebrations surrounding the 100th anniversary of the IOC being headquartered in Lausanne which will be marked next year. Then-IOC President Pierre de Coubertin moved the IOC headquarters to Lausanne in 1915 in the midst of the First World War. In recognition of the long history that unites the IOC and Lausanne, the city received the title of Olympic Capital in 1993.
President’s Burkhalter’s delegation was composed of the head of the Directorate of Public International Law and Legal Advisor of the Swiss Foreign Ministry, Valentin Zellweger; the Director of Switzerland’s Federal Office for Sport, Matthias Remund; the Head of the President’s office, Damien Cottier; the Communications Chief, Jean-Marc Crevoisier; and the Head of Présence Suisse, Nicolas Bideau. President Bach was accompanied by IOC Director General Christophe De Kepper. —- Photo ©IOC/Christophe Moratal