By Duncan Mackay

Copenhagen ArenaNovember 19 - Denmark and Latvia have launched a joint bid to host the 2017 Ice Hockey World Championships, they have announced. 

The Championship would be played in the the two countries capitals, Copenhagen and Riga.

The state of the art Copenhagen Arena (pictured above), on which work is scheduled to start next year for completion in 2015, would host the semi-finals and final.

"We are committed to our goals of developing hockey worldwide and creating a truly global platform for our fans," said Henrik Bach Nielsen, the President of the Danish Ice Hockey Association.

"With the continued dedication from our national partners, the City of Copenhagen, Wonderful Copenhagen and Sport Event Denmark, we are proud to present such a strong bid in cooperation with our experienced Latvian friends.

"We have been working very hard to develop hockey in Denmark in recent years.

"I believe that this bid to bring the World Championship to Denmark for the very first time showcases our commitment and highlights our vision for the future of hockey."

Latvian Ice Hockey Federation President, Kirovs Lipmans, headed the successful World Championship in Latvia in 2006, when Sweden beat the Czech Republic 4-0 in the final.

Sweden celebrate winning 2006 World Championships RigaSweden celebrate winning the 2006 World Championships in Riga

"What we did in 2006, we will do again in 2017," said Lipmans. 

"Creating an unforgettable event for the global hockey fans in a passionate hockey nations."

France and Germany have already announced the intention to launch a joint bid with a German city to be determined - expected to be Berlin or Cologne - and the French capital of Paris as the secondary venue.

The final presentation and appointment of the 2017 World Championship host country will be made by the International Ice Hockey Federation in May 2013 in Stockholm.

Next year's World Championships are due to be held in Stockholm and Helsinki, 2014 in Minsk, 2015 in Prague and Ostrava and 2016 in Moscow and St Petersburg. 

This year's World Championships were won by Russia, who beat Slovakia 6-2 in the final at Helsinki's Hartwall Arena.

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