The South Korean city of Pyeongchang was selected on Wednesday to be the host site for the 2018 Winter Olympics, beating out both Germany and France.
Marking the first bid for South Korea, Pyeongchang won the majority bid over Munich and Annecy in the first round of voting by the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
The people of Pyeongchang rejoiced after waiting 10 years for its turn to host the Olympics. Chairman Yang Ho-cho said that, This is one of the happiest days for our country, our people and millions of youths dreaming of winter sport.
The site, nestled in the Taebaek Mountains, defeated its European competition with 63 of 95 votes after two unsuccessful attempts in previous years. In 2010, South Korea was beat by Canada and again by Russia for the 2014 Winter Olympics.
After much persuasion by the bidding team which included South Korean President Lee Myung-bak, Pyeongchang will be the first Asian city outside of Japan to host the Winter Games. Since the last Asian Olympics host was in Nagano, Japan in 1998, Pyeongchang approached the voting conference in Durban, South Africa with promises of government support and an up-and-coming prosperous marketplace for winter sports.
IOC President Jacques Rogge said, ''Pyeongchang has won convincingly, bidding for the third time has put them on a roll and each time their bid has improved.
As the center for winter sports in the Koreas, hosting the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang is the first stage in an effort to turn the area into an international hot spot for winter sports.