MEGOC and ISB sign the official contract for Games broadcasting

The Minsk 2019 European Games Operations Committee (MEGOC) and the International Sports Broadcasting (ISB) have signed their European Games Cooperation Agreement today at MEGOC office.

The agreement, signed by MEGOC CEO George Katulin and ISB Managing Director Manolo Romero, lays the foundation for how MEGOC and ISB will work together so that ISB can produce the highest quality broadcast of the II European Games coverage. ISB will also manage the sale of broadcast rights.

“The facilities that we visited during the two-day visit are organized very well. They have hosted a number of international competitions in the past, which means they are well-prepared for the 2nd European Games and ready to operate in accordance with the international classes standards. Now we are starting to prepare a production plan that will clarify key components of the production, such as how many people will be involved in this process, including local specialists. We also plan meetings with the Belarusian broadcaster. In addition, your television will provide technical infrastructure, we also plan to involve as many Belarusian specialists as possible. I can assure all together we will provide Games with Olympic-level broadcast”, Mr. Romero said.

ISB has a great experience in sports broadcasting for many of the world’s leading sporting events, including eight Olympic Games, six Paralympic Games, numerous World Championships and World Cups, and continental events such as the Pan American Games and Asian Games, inaugural European Games in Baku. Complete with pricing proposal, image and marketing appeal it became a key factor to choose ISB as a host broadcater of the 2nd European Games.

In the context of cooperation with ISB the representatives of the National State Teleradiocompany of the Republic of Belarus – the TV-rightholder for the territory of the host country will have a great opportunity to enhance their professional competence. Belteleradiocompany will also become a subsupplier of the technical broadcasting services. ISB will produce an anticipated 600 hours of broadcast coverage during the event from 21st to 30th June 2015. It is also expected that the feed will be available in 160 countries.

Makis Asimakopoulos: The Games will leave the Belarusians a great legacy.

The EOC sports consultant Makis Asimakopoulos shared his thoughts about the readiness of the Belarusian capital to the 2nd European Games.

– We discussed with MEGOC all issues related to the preparation of the Games. During the Open Day, NOC representatives could see everything neсessary for the athletes during the Games. The guests were very impressed by the Belarusian capital, people’s attitude, magnificent sports facilities that already exist, the athletes’ village and employees who work for MEGOC on delivering the European Games. We feel as the Games are looming large.

Are you satisfied with the state of the main venue of the Games – the Dinamo stadium?

– Dinamo stadium will be a heart of the Games due to its location. We saw how many people are working on the reconstruction of this venue to complete it on time. The opening ceremony here will be an excellent start of the Games, the athletics competitions with the participation of the best athletes will be a bright event. Dinamo stadium was a good surprise for us just like other sports facilities.

Could you please share your impressions on your cooperation with the organizing committee headed by Prime Minister Andrei Kobyakov?

– It is a great success and honor that the Republican Organizing Committee is headed by the Prime Minister. I believe that the employees of MEGOC are also professionals in their field. They speak English and know their work well. They are open to new knowledge and feedback, which leads to faster work. MEGOC employs more specialists now comparing to the period when I came to Minsk for the Coordination Commission. It means step forward has been taken.

Previous major events experienced some transportation issues. How are things going in Belarus?

– I can’t see any problems now. It is not only because the proper transportation plan designed and the city administration work to debug the system for the Games, but also because a good infrastructure created in Minsk from the very beginning. Therefore, there are excellent preconditions for ensuring smooth public transportation service during the Games.

Do you think everything is ready for the fans?

– It is very important to attract fans from Europe. For Belarus, it is a chance to attract tourists and show them the country. I believe, it is a focus of work if you want to promote the Games across Europe. We need to talk about the Forum because it will bring many benefits to the Belarusians. You have a beautiful city and a worthy to show country.

What do you think about the visa-free regime for fans and participants of the Games?

– A ticket or accreditation will give an opportunity to get into the country. This is an excellent option that allows you to visit Belarus without any problems and stress and connect you with the rest of the world.

Will there be any fan zones at the European games?

– It’s a great idea. Various culture program accompanies any multi-sporting events such as the Olympic Games or the European games. We had the presentation about it today. As you know, sports and culture go side-by-side. And for people, it is an opportunity not only to see the competitions but also to meet the culture of your magnificent country. Therefore, we hope that the cultural program, of which the fan zones are part, will give this opportunity to people.

All sports and non-sports facilities in Minsk are located close to each other. Do you consider it an advantage?

– European games in Minsk are very compact because all the involved venues are located close to each other, to the athletes’ village, delegations’ hotel and around the downtown. This excellent condition will contribute to the better experience and will allow you to reach quickly the village and facilities, and will provide an opportunity to save time that can be used to get to know the city.

Is it possible to host a major sporting event without a huge budget?

– By the way, it is the best contribution Belarus can make. Here we use a model that is based on using a small budget to organize the Forum. Games become sustainable and attractive for the rest of Europe. The Belarusians make an effort to organize a multi-sport event with a minimum budget. You have sports facilities that were built earlier; also, you use all your previous experience, which makes you a role model for the following organizers. Thank you for helping us become sustainable.

Is it any help from the European Olympic Committees?

– The EOC cover expenses for several areas, including of athletes to the place of the competition and back. In addition, we share all our experiences. Our representatives come to Minsk quite often, so the Belarusians can save money in the process of transferring knowledge.

Will Belarus benefit?

– Definitely. This is the reason the Games are organized here. Belarus organizes European games in order to benefit the country and the city. We are here to help you get the most from the Games.

Photographs of abandoned sports facilities are often published on the Internet. Is this a problem?

– This is a big problem. Organizers of major sporting events must use sports facilities constantly and do not spend money on venues that will not be used in the future. Good work has not been done in this respect in Greece. We still have sports facilities that are not used. The same problem in Rio and even in Sydney. You are different because Belarus will use already existed arenas. These investments can be used to strengthen professional capacity, sports, sports procedures, and not to build buildings that will not be used. The Games will leave the Belarusians a great legacy.

There is an opinion that major sports competitions should be hosted only by large and wealthy countries?

– Yes, such an opinion exists. However, I support IOC president Thomas Bach, who seeks to make the Games sustainable, and you will see it in 2020. He strives to follow a model, when the Olympics will be organized by 2-3 countries, using those venues that have already been built. Everything is moving towards making sports forums available for as many countries as possible, and not just for big and wealthy ones.

What do we need to do now to prepare qualitatively for the Games?

– The main effort should be finding proper people. They must come and start working immediately, not losing a single day. Therefore, we must continue to expand the staff to prepare all the areas of the multi-sport event. This is the biggest challenge that we’ll intensify in the coming months. But at the same time, it is necessary to learn from the experience of other organizers in order to work faster and better.

Do you have any concerns about the organizing committee?

– I want to be clear. I have no doubts. I have no doubts about the success of the Games. I have no doubts about people working in MEGOC.

Radio Belarus sends greetings to the European Games

Since April 1 a series of radio programs My greetings to the European games will appear on the international radio Belarus. The selfie contest “MINSK2019: My greetings to the II European Games” will be held within those programs. The main purpose of the creative contest is to draw attention to the main competitions of the next year that Belarus will host and enhance the prestige of the Belarusian sport in the international arena.

Foreign participants are also eligible to apply. Contestants need to take their selfies focused on the favorite sports or sports facilities and post them on any social media adding hashtag  #MINSK2019. All the picture shall be also sent to or to Radio Belarus International’s official website

Belarusians have a great opportunity to show the capital of the 2nd European Games to the whole world taking part in the contest. And for all selfie fans, it is time to show their talents and sports in unexpected ways.

The contest is held in three stages:
April 1 to October 25, 2018 – submitted photos are collected and reviewed, 50 photos are selected by the jury for the next stage;

November 1 to 30, 2018 – voting for the selected photos on the special page of the contest at Radio Belarus website “Belarus” to identify the 10 participants whose photos will receive the largest number of votes;

December 1 to 19, 2018 – the jury selects 3 winners out of 10 participants who received the largest number of votes at the previous stage.

The final results are to be announced in the period between December 20 and December 28, 2018.

The best pictures will be published on the website of the Radio Belarus website “Belarus” in the contest section, and the intermediate results will be reported in the program “My greetings to the European Games”.

The winners will be awarded diplomas from Belteleradiocompany, as well as sets of tickets for the events of the European Games in Minsk and the official gear of the National Team of the Republic of Belarus.

The jury includes the representatives of the international radio “Belarus”, MEGOC, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Belarus and the Ministry of Information of the Republic of Belarus.