By Tom Degun in Innsbruck

Jacques Rogge_with_Yoggl_Insbruck_2012January 17 - International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Jacques Rogge (pictured) has revealed that his organisation would welcome a bid for the 2018 Youth Olympic Games from the UK.

The British Olympic Association (BOA) formally declared their interest in bidding for the competition last month by opening a process inviting applications from cities in the UK to put themselves forward as candidates for the event.

Glasgow look set to be the only city in the UK that will bid for the event after Manchester and Birmingham – the other obvious British candidates for the competition – confirmed to insidethegames that they have no plans to put forward a bid and Cardiff indicated that they are more focused on a bid for the Commonwealth Games in 2026.

But Rogge said that any bid that comes from the UK would have a good chance of replicating the successful London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic bid due to the fact that it has a lot of experience in hosting major sporting events.

"I think that a bid from the United Kingdom would be a strong one," said Rogge here at the Youth Olympic Games Opening Ceremony.

"There is a whole series of major events that are going to be organised in the United Kingdom in the coming years.

"There is the Commonwealth Games in 2014 in Glasgow, there is the Rugby World Cup in 2015 in England and there is the track and field World Athletics Championships in 2017 in London so we would welcome any bid from the UK that would be launched for the 2018 Youth Olympic Games.

"We have already awarded 2014 to Nanjing for the second Summer Youth Olympics but we are shortly going to examine the bids for the 2018 Youth Olympics.

"So we would welcome a bid from the United Kingdom but also a bid from any other country."

Glagow May_13Glasgow City Council has already contacted the BOA to express a preliminary interest in hosting the prestigious event for 14 to 18-year-old elite athletes because it is the sole authority of the BOA to approve any UK candidate city and agree to submit a single bid to the IOC.

The deadline for interested cities' submissions is January 30, 2012, and the BOA will decide at their board meeting in February whether they will go ahead with a bid.

So far the only two confirmed bidders for the Games are Buenos Aires and Medellín in Colombia.

But Abuja in Nigeria, Monterrey in Mexico and Kaspiysk in Russia have already said that they are likely to bid for the competition.

Other potential bid cities include Medellín include The Hague in the Netherlands.

The IOC will produce a shortlist of candidate cities in January 2013, before making a final decision on where the event is held in June 2013.

Andy Hunt, the chief executive of the BOA, said last month the opportunity to bid for the 2018 Youth Olympics represents an exciting project following London 2012.

"Delivering a tangible, UK wide sporting legacy was a key element of London's bid for the 2012 Olympics, so it would be fitting if hosting the 2018 Youth Olympic Games contributed to bringing this ambition to life," said Hunt, who is also currently here.

"While inviting expressions of interest from cities in the UK who wish to put themselves forward as potential candidate cities is an essential step in the process, it is important to be clear that ultimately, the decision whether to submit a bid to the International Olympic Committee rests with the National Olympic Committee."

Contact the writer of this story at [email protected]

Credit for image above: Glasgow: Scotland With Style.

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