Exclusive negotiations have begun to bring the 2026 Commonwealth Games to Victoria with a vision to deliver a model for the Games unprecedented in the event’s history.
Commonwealth Games Australia has signed a Heads of Agreement with the Victorian Government and the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) to enter exclusive negotiations to bring the 2026 Commonwealth Games to Victoria with a vision to deliver a model for the Games unprecedented in the event’s history.
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews and the Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events Martin Pakula today confirmed that, if awarded, the 2026 Commonwealth Games would return to Victoria.
Victoria will work to deliver a world-class Commonwealth Games across Victoria that leaves a legacy for the State and it is proposed that the 2026 Games would be hosted across the State, unlike the event in Melbourne in 2006.
The Government will now work with both the CGF and CGA to develop Victoria’s 2026 Commonwealth Games Submission – which will assess the viability of hosting the event.
The submission will focus on a new way to host the Games, showing how events could be held in multiple locations across regional Victoria to showcase the best of what the State has to offer and ensure a uniquely Victorian experience for the athletes and spectators.
A regionally focused Commonwealth Games would expand the capacity of Victorian regional cities for major events, tourism, arts, culture and sport. Not only would the events mean new economic opportunities through event infrastructure – it would deliver the double benefit of creating local jobs and housing. The Games would also drive participation in sports at both a community and professional level, throughout the State.
A major cultural festival would accompany the 2026 Commonwealth Games that celebrates the diversity of competing nations.
The CGF will assess this submission prior to any decision being made to award the Games to Victoria.
The 2026 Games will be the 23rd edition of the major multi-sport competition, which first began in Hamilton, Canada in 1930.
The CGF have been in discussions with multiple countries across the Commonwealth regarding hosting the 2026 Games, with negotiations accelerating following the launch of the 2026/30 Strategic Roadmap in October 2021. The Roadmap provides future hosts and sports with the renewed flexibility to be innovative and creative in delivering the Games.
Commonwealth Games Australia have been seeking a host for 2026 and have been working with the CGF to bring the Commonwealth Games back to Australia.
Australia has staged the Commonwealth Games on five occasions, with Victoria playing host to the Melbourne 2006 Games; widely considered one of the most successful editions of the event in history.
Australia has also staged the Games in Sydney in 1938, Perth in 1962, Brisbane in 1982 and most recently Gold Coast in 2018.
The 2022 Commonwealth Games will be staged in Birmingham, England from 28 July – 8 August.
Commonwealth Games Australia President Ben Houston said: “Hosting Great Games is a key pillar in the Commonwealth Games Australia strategic plan and given our window for hosting the Games is 2026 we are thrilled to join the CGF in exclusive dialogue with Victoria to host the Commonwealth Games once again.
A home Games provides immeasurable benefits for our Member sports and athletes and we look forward to working with both the CGF and the Victorian Government to bring a final Games plan to life.”
Commonwealth Games Federation President Dame Louise Martin DBE said: “We are pleased to have entered into an exclusive dialogue with Victoria and Commonwealth Games Australia to host the 2026 Commonwealth Games.
Following months of positive discussions, it is clear that Victoria has an exciting vision for a future Games which will provide many benefits for the community whilst leaving a significant legacy for the State.
This vision is aligned with our 2026/30 Strategic Roadmap, which has proved to be a catalyst for positive and exciting conversations on how our event will look in four years’ time.
Victoria is one of the world’s greatest sporting States and there is no doubt it has the venues, infrastructure, and people to stage a world class edition of the Games.
We are very excited to be working closely with Victoria and Commonwealth Games Australia to explore the potential staging of the event in the State.”
Premier Daniel Andrews said: “Victoria is Australia’s sporting State, and, if awarded, the 2026 Commonwealth Games would demonstrate to the world a new way to deliver the competition.”
“We would hope to have the majority of events in our regional cities – to display the best of Victoria, create jobs and housing and infrastructure that will deliver for the long term.”
Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events Martin Pakula said: “Bringing the 2026 Commonwealth Games to Victoria will showcase our State globally, deliver major economic benefits and support jobs across our great State.”