The Road to Nanjing: Ambassador Xu Hong visits the Barbados Olympic Association (BOA)
The Barbados Olympic Association (BOA) received an official visit from the Chinese Ambassador to Barbados, H.E. Mr. Xu Hong, to discuss a wide range of topics, including sport in Barbados, the Olympic movement and preparations for the 2014 Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing, China.
The Chinese contingent, comprising Ambassador Hong, Mr. Wu Gangchen, Economic and Commercial Counsellor, Mr. Niu Zhikang, Attaché and Mr. Yang Lianchun, First Secretary, met with Mr. Steve Stoute, President of the BOA and Mr. Glyne Clarke, General Manager of the BOA.
During a short tour of the on-site museum, Steve Stoute welcomed the Ambassador and praised China for their commitment to sport. “We are pleased to welcome Ambassador Hong and other Chinese officials to the offices of the BOA. The Beijing Olympics were spectacular and we are looking forward to the Youth Games in Nanjing next year. Barbados is presently going through the qualification stages but we hope to have 8 or 9 athletes competing.”
Glyne Clarke will be leading the team travelling to China and he reiterated the BOA’s excitement. “We thank the Chinese Government for their continued support and interest in local sporting activities. Barbados has produced tremendous athletes over the years, including Ryan Brathwaite and Obadele Thompson. We hope to build on this and we look forward to carrying a strong, competitive team to Nanjing.”
Ambassador Hong praised the BOA for its efforts and commended the Association for its designation as an official International Olympic Committee (IOC) training centre, the only one in the Caribbean. “The BOA has done very valuable work and we hope that through our respective Governments, we can cooperate with you and assist with future endeavours.” Mr. Wu Gangchen confirmed their willingness to assist, explaining that the Chinese Government has provided support for numerous economic, social and cultural projects in many different countries.
Ambassador Hong was also introduced to Tessa Chadderton-Shaw, Regional Administrator of the Caribbean Regional Anti-Doping Organisation (RADO), and they discussed the importance of education and testing in tackling drug use in sports.
Following the tour Stoute presented the Ambassador with a commemorative BOA tie and thanked him once again for visiting the BOA.