The European Olympic Committees (EOC) and Eurovision Sport have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to work towards an exclusive agreement for the 2023 and 2027 editions of the European Games.
The MOU marks the EBU’s first involvement with the European Games, a pioneering, quadrennial multisport event that is set to celebrate its third edition in Poland in 2023.
The signing underscores the commitment of the two sides to move forward together in pursuit of a broadcasting deal that will ensure the coverage of the Games will be available on free-to-air public television across the continent. Such an agreement would bring the stories of the European Games and Europe’s elite athletes to households worldwide only a year out from the Olympic Games of Paris 2024 and Los Angeles 2028.
“The interest and commitment shown by the EBU for the European Games is only matched by their expertise in covering large multi-sport events,” said EOC Acting President Niels Nygaard. “The signing of today’s Memorandum of Understanding is another important step forward for the European Games, one that should lead to a broadcasting deal that will bring the Games to the widest audience yet both here in Europe and elsewhere around the globe.”
Andreas Aristodemou, Eurovision Sport’s Head of Summer Sports Rights, welcomed the signing, saying: “I’m delighted that we’ve agreed this MOU with the EOC. The European Games provide high-level competition, acting as a qualifying event for the Olympic Games in many sports. Exclusive free-to-air coverage via Public-Service Media across Europe and beyond will also provide an important showcase for some sports and athletes that don’t usually receive regular TV coverage.”
“This is a positive development for the athletes of Europe and brings added value to all 50 NOCs across Europe,” said Hasan Arat, EOC Chair of the Coordination Commission for the European Games 2023. “The agreement comes during the 50th anniversary of the EOC and this partnership will help us continue to showcase our events to the biggest audience possible. We have a commitment to partner with the strongest sports and with the good relations that the EBU has with many federations, it is a natural fit for us to team up to tell the story of the European Games in the most compelling way.”
The announcement follows the successful inaugural edition of the quadrennial multisport European Games in Baku, Azerbaijan in 2015, featuring 5898 athletes across 20 sports.
From 12 to 28 June, 18 venues were brought to life with performances that broke junior and senior world records. Innovative street and beach sports complemented Olympic qualifiers before a cumulative audience of 1.7 billion viewers.
This was followed by the second edition in Minsk, Belarus in 2019, in which 4,000 athletes participated in a programme that included 15 sports, 10 of which provided Olympic qualifications for Tokyo 2020.
The next edition will take place in Kraków and the regions of Małopolska and Śląsk in Poland, from 21 June to 2 July, 2023, expected to host 25 sports, including 16 Olympic sports with qualifications for Paris 2024.