Baku preferred host of 2020 Olympics: poll

Baku leads by landslide among the six cities bidding to host the 2020 Olympic Games, a public opinion poll has found, according to Azerbaijan's Ministry of Youth and Sports.

Asked by GamesBids.com, an Olympic bid news and information website, which country they would like to host the tournament, 50.63 percent of respondents cited the Azerbaijani capital. With 10,252 votes, Baku surpassed Istanbul (16.29 percent), Tokyo (12.86 percent), Madrid (10.89 percent), Doha (5.61 percent), and Rome (3.72 percent).

GamesBids.com is one of the most influential websites providing information on preparations for the Olympic Games, the process of selecting their hosts and bidding cities, Konul Nurullayeva, the CEO of the Baku 2020 Bid Committee, said while commenting on the outcomes of the poll. Nurullayeva expressed confidence that these results would be taken into consideration by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) members during the selection of the city to host the 2020 Olympics.

The subscribers of the GamesBids.com website include 129 national Olympic committees, as well as international media outlets and IOC members.

According to a poll conducted in Azerbaijan in December 2011, 95 percent of the citizens support conduct of the 2020 Olympics in Baku. 93 percent of those polled said they believed this would boost the development of sports in the country. 30 percent said they would volunteer to help organize the tournament.

In April, the IOC executive committee will determine countries which will proceed to the next stage of the Olympics host's selection. The decision will be formally announced on May 20-25 in Quebec, Canada.

Following a two-stage selection, the IOC will announce the host city on September 7, 2013 in Buenos Aires.

Baku earlier submitted its bid to host the 2016 Summer Olympic Games, but the IOC selected the Brazilian city of Rio de Janeiro as the host.