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Search for 2026 Commonwealth Games host goes on after Singapore opts not to bid

SINGAPORE: Singapore has ruled out hosting the next edition of the Commonwealth Games in 2026, casting further doubt on the future of the quadrennial multi-sport event.

In response to CNA's query, Sport Singapore (SportSG) and Commonwealth Games Singapore (CGS) said on Wednesday (Apr 3) that they have "studied the feasibility of hosting the 2026 Commonwealth Games and have decided not to make any bid to host the Games".

This comes a few weeks after Singapore said it was "assessing the feasibility" of an invitation by the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) to stage the 2026 edition.

SportSG and CGS told CNA on Mar 14 that during last November’s general assembly, the CGF invited all member associations – including Singapore – to express interest in hosting the next Games.

The assembly, which was held in Singapore, was convened four months after the Australian state of Victoria pulled out as hosts of the 2026 Games, citing the projected cost overruns.

Daniel Andrews, then-state premier of Victoria, said that the cost of the Games, could spiral to more than A$7 billion (US$4.6 billion) from a budgeted A$2.6 billion if they went ahead with the quadrennial multi-sport event.

"I will not take money out of hospitals and schools to fund an event that is three times the cost as estimated and budgeted for last year,” he added.

Victoria’s decision to withdraw as hosts and the lack of an obvious alternative after Australia's Gold Coast pulled its bid to step in as a replacement has triggered debate about the future of the Games, which was last held in Birmingham, UK in 2022. 

According to the British government, the Birmingham Games' budget was £778 million (US$980 million) and the 2026 Games in Victoria - had it gone ahead - was forecast