The city of Medellin in Colombia has been announced as one of three finalist candidates in the race to host the 2018 Youth Olympic Games. 
The International Olympic Committee's (IOC) Evaluation Commission announced the Colombian city would go forward to compete in the final stages to host the event alongside Glasgow (Scotland) and Buenos Aires (Argentina).
The bid represents a big milestone not only for Medellin, but also for the Department of Antioquia and all of Colombia, as the efforts towards submitting the documentation required by the IOC involved local, regional and national bodies, reassuring the organisation that Medellin has the infrastructure and the necessary human, technical and financial resources to host the event.
The city of Medellin has undergone dramatic urban regeneration in recent times.Medellin, the country’s industrial capital, is also an advanced epicentre for tourism, commerce, industry, and technology. The city has introduced a metro transportation system and has two airports.
A statement from the IOC said: “Medellin is delivering a compact concept and makes good use of its locations. It has good experience in organising international and multi-sport events, as it hosted the 9th South American Games in 2010. The reassurance provided by Medellin is clear and has good quality in general. As for culture and education, all the issues considered by the IOC are covered, offering a concept with good contents, including innovative ideas”.
“We are excited to have this opportunity. Medellin has the resources to host this event and all of Colombia will be happy to help,” said Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos Calderon.
“Medellin’s renaissance is ongoing, and as the city continues to welcome high profile international events which showcase Colombia as an emerging destination forglobal meetings and events – this trend looks set to last,” added Maria Claudia Lacouture, President of Proexport Colombia, the national tourist board.