Lausanne: Three cities have expressed interest in hosting the 2030 Winter Olympic Games, the International Olympic Committee said Friday.
Salt Lake City in the United States, the northern Japanese city of Sapporo and the Spanish city of Barcelona are the three cities to have registered their interest, according to Octavian Morariu, head of the IOC's evaluation commission.
Two of the potential host cities have already hosted the Winter Games: Salt Lake City in 2002 and Sapporo in 1972.
Barcelona, which has paired up with the Pyrenees in its bid, hosted the 1992 Summer Olympics.
Options for the Barcelona bid include holding the skiing events in the principality of Andorra, a source close to the affair said.
With no ski jump in the Pyrenees, those events could be organised in Sarajevo, capital of Bosnia-Herzegovina and host of the 1984 Games, the same source said.
Under recently-introduced IOC rules, host cities have a greater flexibility in organising the Games and are encouraged to utilise existing installations to cut down on costs.
Cross-country cooperation is also not sniffed at.
The Youth Winter Olympics, which kicked off in Lausanne on Thursday, see France hosting the nordic combined, biathlon and ski jumping events.
Beijing, which will host the 2022 Winter Games, will become the first city to have welcomed both seasonal events after having hosted the 2008 Summer Games.
The 2026 Winter Olympics will be hosted by Milan and the Italian mountain resort of Cortina d'Ampezzo.
No date has yet been scheduled for the designation of the host for the 2030 Games.