South Korea and North Korea have agreed to send a formal document to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to express their intention to co-host the 2032 Summer Games. The two Koreas have also agreed to form unified teams at the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics and to work with the IOC and international federations of individual sports to discuss specifics.
The two sides reached the agreement during their sports talks in the inter-Korean liaison office in the North’s border town of Kaesong on Friday. The talks were held following the agreement made at the senior-level meeting to implement the Panmunjom Declaration and the Pyongyang Joint Declaration of September. Seoul’s Vice Sports Minister Roh Tae-kang led the South Korean delegation and met with North Korean Vice Sports Minister Won Kil U.
As one of the concrete measures included in the agreement, the two Koreas said that they will try to field a joint team at the 2019 World Men’s Handball Championship, which will be held in Denmark and Germany in January next year. The International Handball Federation (IHF) reportedly started discussing the participation of a unified Korea team in June, and has said that it can allow the two Koreas to add 20 players to the roster while 16 players are originally allowed per country.
Following the announcement of the Pyongyang Joint Declaration of September, IOC President Thomas Bach said that the IOC “welcomes very much” the intention of the two Koreas to jointly host the Olympics.
If realized, the 2032 Summer Games jointly hosted by South and North Korea are likely to be named “The 2032 Seoul-Pyongyang Olympics” as the Olympic Games are hosted by cities, not countries, unlike the World Cup games.
With the addition of the two Koreas, a total of nine cities have expressed interest in the 2032 Olympics, namely Germany (multiple cities), Brisbane of Australia, Jakarta of Indonesia, Shanghai of China, Egypt, Russia, India, and Thailand, signaling intense competition at an unprecedented level.