Approaching Games time, the Commission, including International Paralympic Committee (IPC) President Sir Philip Craven, discussed several areas and looked closely at the progress made by the Beijing 2008 Organizing Committee (BOCOG).
In addition to the Commission meetings, a specific working group on Paralympic Games discussed several topics including Paralympic ticketing, sports, Paralympic village and the planning for the Paralympic torch relay. Further side-meetings on Paralympic topics were also attended by IPC CEO Xavier Gonzalez, IPC Executive Director of Sport and IF Relations David Grevemberg and IPC Paralympic Games Director Arno Wolter.
The IPC was also briefed by BOCOG’s Executive Vice-President Liu Jingmin about the recent strengthening of the command structure and additional resources allocated to the Paralympic Games.
Said Sir Philip: “We have congratulated BOCOG to the excellent progress made since our last meetings. The Paralympic preparations are on track, but we also stressed that it will now be critical to concentrate efforts on finalizing the Paralympic plans during a phase when the OCOG is understandably very busy getting ready for the Olympic Games. Special attention is needed for the Paralympic ticketing programme and promoting sales. Creating a vibrant atmosphere with full venues will be a key success factor for the Games”.
Just prior to the Co-ordination Commission, Sir Philip and Mr. Gonzalez had the opportunity to receive an in-depth update on accessibility improvements, especially in public areas. This included also a visit to the Great Wall and Forbidden City which are currently being made accessible.
After the conclusion of the meetings, the IPC President and CEO will pay a visit to Qingdao, the host city of the Paralympic Sailing events, in order to learn about the status of preparations in this remote venue.
The Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games will take place from 6 to 17 September 2008, with around 4,000 athletes from 160 countries competing in 20 sports.