The federal government gave its support to the North American bid for the 2026 World Cup on Tuesday. "But it also comes with potential risks, so we're looking at those risks and going to make a decision that's in the best interest of B.C. taxpayers", said Lisa Beare, minister of tourism, arts and culture.
The province owns BC Place, and would have beenon the hook for a portion of the cost for things like security, parking, and modifications to the playing surface, if Vancouver was selected.
Vancouver mayor Gregor Robertson is reaffirming the city's support for a bid to host the 2026 FIFA World Cup despite concerns from Premier John Horgan about what it could do to the province's bottom line.
Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal and Edmonton have been identified as potential candidates for hosting games.
The Liberals criticized the provincial government for not backing the bid. "That adds unknown costs and unknown risks to the B.C. taxpayers". "Vancouver remains a city with an exceptional sports hosting history and we look forward to working with the province and our Sport Hosting Vancouver team to identify future global sporting events that bring positive economic and cultural impact to Vancouver".
"What is it that B.C.is unsure of", he asked.
"While I'm disappointed by this outcome, I look forward to pursuing further opportunities to bring world-class soccer and other sporting events to Vancouver in the future".
Expanded FIFA World Cup could include games in Vancouver. "I'm just not prepared to sign off on that and nor is the minister of finance".
"There's been many months, even years put into this proposal, and at the last second to pull out. the government shouldn't have done that", he said.
Peter Montopoli, general secretary of the Canadian Soccer Association, said that money would be used during the transition period from when the bid is awarded to when FIFA essentially takes over running the tournament.
Earlier Wednesday, Beare said B.C. remains open to hosting some of the games if its requests to clarify financial obligations are met.
The City of Vancouver signed off on being part of the bid in January.
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