STAVANGER, Norway (AP) — IOC President Thomas Bach arrived in Norway on Monday amid growing local opposition to Oslo's bid to host the 2022 Winter Olympics.
Bach's visit came as part of a planned tour of the Scandinavian country's facilities for the 2016 Winter Youth Olympics and includes meetings with politicians, sports leaders and lawmakers. He was also received by Norway's King Harald.
Earlier this month, the junior partner in the ruling coalition voted against any government support for the bid, a move that likely puts the city out of the race. The Progress Party objects to Norway hosting the games, saying it would hamper the government's ability to fund infrastructure projects, education, health care and tax cuts.
The Oslo bid has been plagued by Norwegian fears of spiraling costs after the 2014 Sochi Games, but Bach attempted to ease concerns claiming criticism of the Russian event was far off the mark.
"People are sitting with a false impression that the Olympics cost more and more, especially in connection with Sochi, and it is wrong," Bach told reporters in Oslo. "Sochi cost no more than Vancouver, and the event was actually in surplus at the end."