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All 2018 Games bidders make IOC shortlist

PRETORIA (Reuters) - All three cities bidding for the 2018 Winter Olympics have made an International Olympic Committee shortlist with Germany’s Munich and South Korea’s Pyeongchang finishing top in a technical report.

Munich, Pyeongchang and France’s Annecy, who were urged to rework their project, will now have about 12 months for the final round of campaigning before the IOC elects the winning bid in Durban, South Africa, on July 6, 2011.

The Russian Black Sea resort of Sochi will host the 2014 Winter Games.

“The (IOC) Executive Board today decided that all three applicant cities deserved to move to the second phase of the bidding procedure,” IOC Olympic Games Executive Director Gilbert Felli said in Lausanne on Tuesday.

“It has been made clear, however, that Annecy needed to review its project. We look forward to working with the three candidate cities and wish them good luck for the year of competition ahead.”

The decision was based on a technical report analyzing in detail the quality of the bids.

THIRD TIME

The South Korean resort is bidding for the third straight time after narrowly losing out to Vancouver for the 2010 and Sochi for the 2014 Games.

“A lot of dedication and hard work has brought us here today but we realize that we all have a long way to go until Durban,” said Yangho Cho, Pyeongchang bid chief.

Pyeongchang and Munich’s overall concept won a mark of between eight and nine points out of 10 while Annecy was marked between four and seven points.

“Over the next year, we will build on our strong foundations and continue developing the enthusiasm for Munich 2018,” Willy Bogner, head of Munich’s bid said.

The three cities now have, until January to submit their candidature files.

The files will be analyzed by the IOC’s evaluation commission, which will also visit the bidders, before issuing a report about a month before the vote.

“We are more determined than ever to do everything possible to offer exceptional Games, in the heart of the mountains, serving the Olympic ideal,” Annecy bid chief Edgar Grospiron said. “Therefore, we are working on readjusting our project, as suggested by the IOC.”

Editing by John Mehaffey

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