The International Olympic Committee has officially invited the National Olympic Committees and their winter sports athletes to take part in the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018, which will open in one year’s time.
The invitations were sent from the IOC headquarters in Lausanne, while a ceremony took place in the Republic of Korea at the Gangneung Hockey Centre.
Gangneung is due to host all ice sport competitions during the games next year.
Attended by IOC coordination commission chair Gunilla Lindberg, and by representatives of the government of the Republic of Korea, the celebrations showcased Korean culture with a concert with K-pop stars and the 2018 Choir.
It also included the unveiling of the Olympic torch and torchbearer uniform which were presented by Olympic figure skating gold medallist Yuna Kim, Youth Olympic Games cross country gold medallist Magnus Kim, and five young future leaders from Korea.
Speaking at the ceremony in a video message, IOC president Bach said: “The Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018 will open up new horizons.
“It will connect the people and the passion of the Republic of Korea with the world.
“PyeongChang will transform into a hub for Asian winter sports.
“For the first time, the magic of Olympic sport on snow and ice will come to Korea.
With a number of test events already completed, ticket sales now underway, and a promising volunteer programme (91,000 applications received for the 22,400 places to be filled), there is a real sense that the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018 are taking shape.
Ticket sales also began today in the Republic of Korea and in some other territories around the world.
More information about how to obtain tickets for the games can be found here.