Hosting of World Cup not purely economic venture
- President Jagdeo
Stabroek News
April 1, 2004

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President Bharrat Jagdeo has given the assurance that the Guyana government is committed to hosting World Cup Cricket in 2007.

The president gave that assurance while addressing invitees and guests at the Umana Yana last Tuesday, minutes after receiving the International Cricket Coun-cil's World Cup 2007 host venue selection Bid Book.

The document was presented to Jagdeo by Guyana's under-19 cricket captain Assad Fudadin. It contains 690 questions which require responses including policy decisions and in some cases new legislation. The book also contains 24 deliverables required by the ICC for every country competing to host the games, one of which is a modern stadium. Guyana has sought assistance from the government of India to build such a stadium.

The president is urging all Guyanese to support Guyana's efforts to be a venue for matches. He added that the government has already taken several steps towards preparing Guyana as a viable host nation and these include the upgrading of facilities at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport Timehri as well as embarking on an extensive road programme on the East Bank of Demerara.

The president noted that government is offering an attractive incentive programme to create the environment necessary for hosting such an event.

He urged that the event not be seen as purely and economic venture but rather an opportunity to secure a place to host future international cricket games.

The president said that the expenditure by government on the venture does not imply a lack of commitment to other sports but rather that cricket is a game that has the potential to bridge every divide and the ability to foster unity.

Minister of Culture Youth & Sport Gail Teixiera noted that government had already approved $78M for preparatory work on the stadium and the tendering process will start shortly.

She disclosed that Architect Philip Alsopp has been contracted by government as the bid preparation manager who has to have Guyana's submissions ready by the May 6th 2004 deadline.

On July 6th this year the ICC will make a decision on which countries will be designated hosts of matches for the event. Indian High Commiss-ioner to Guyana Avinash Gupta noted that Guyana will be sending a team of experts soon to India to finalize arrangements for the stadium and vowed that his country will fully support this country's efforts.

President of the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) Chetram Singh called on all Guyanese to support Guyana's efforts.

Pepsi will be the exclusive drink during the World Cup and Antonious Raghubansie Marketing Manager of DDL pledged his company's support for the event.