Why Australia withdraw as host?
Australia’s Victoria state has withdrawn as host of the 2026 Commonwealth Games because of a massive increase in the projected cost of staging the multi-sports event. Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews said his government last year agreed to host the next edition of the quadrennial event “but not at any cost.” He said his government had initially budgeted 2.6 billion Australian dollars ($2.39 billion) to stage the Games in five regional cities but recent estimates put the potential cost as high as 7 billion Australian dollars ($6.3 billion).
- The Commonwealth Games Federation issued a statement saying the decision was “hugely disappointing” for the organization and the athletes and it was taking advice on its options for finding a solution for the event in 2026. The CGF said the estimated cost escalation was mainly due to the regional, multi-city host model and the Victoria government’s decision to change plans for venues and include more sports.
- The Games had been scheduled for March 17-29 in the regional centres of Geelong, Bendigo, Ballarat, Gippsland and Shepparton in regional Victoria.
Victoria state hosted the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne. The last edition of the Games held in Australia was on the Gold Coast, Queensland state, in 2018. The Gold Coast is part of the southeast Queensland area that is scheduled to host events during the 2032 Olympics in Brisbane.