TORONTO, Ontario March 15, 2018 — Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science and Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities, announced, on Tuesday, that the Government of Canada is supporting-in-principle the United 2026 bid to co-host the 2026 FIFA World Cup™ in Canada, Mexico and the United States.
Held every four years, the FIFA World Cup™ is the most prestigious tournament for the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA).
Co-hosting this international event, watched by billions of people worldwide, would provide considerable sport, social, community, cultural and economic benefits as well as showcase Canada around the world, the Minister said.
“Hosting major sporting events allows Canadian athletes to compete at home in front of their families, friends and fans. It is also a significant opportunity for Canadians to witness, first-hand, world-class sport competitions,” Duncan said.
“What better place to host the 2026 FIFA World Cup™ than in our multicultural cities where every team is a home team.”
Held in six cities and provinces, from coast to coast across Canada, 1.35 million spectators that attended the newly expanded 24-team competition contributed to an economic impact of nearly a half-a-billion dollars.
The soccer-governing bodies for Canada, Mexico and the United States jointly announced on April 10, 2017, that they would pursue a bid for the 2026 FIFA World Cup™.
“The importance of the Canada-United States-Mexico relationship is reflected in our strong diplomatic, cultural, educational and commercial relations. Canada remains committed to strengthening its multi-faceted relationship with its North American friends and allies, noted the government in a media release.
“The collaboration of our three governments, in support of the United Bid for the 2026 FIFA World Cup™, is another example of how much our three countries can achieve when we work together toward common goals,” the release stated.
“On behalf of Canada Soccer, I would like to thank the Government of Canada for their support of the United Bid to host the 2026 FIFA World Cup™ in Canada, Mexico and the United States.
“Canada has raised the bar for women’s and youth FIFA competitions, including the most recent record-setting FIFA Women’s World Cup Canada 2015™ and as the only G7 country to have not hosted the men’s competition, we are more than ready to welcome the world along with our neighbours in Mexico and the United States,” said Steven Reed, President, Canada Soccer and Co-chair, United Bid Committee.
The Government of Canada is the single largest investor in Canada’s sport system, promoting sport participation among all Canadians and providing support for young athletes, their national and multisport organizations, and the hosting of international events so that Canadian athletes can compete with the best.
On June 13, 2018, FIFA will announce if United 2026, Morocco, or neither bidder will host the 2026 FIFA Men’s World Cup.
If the event is awarded to United 2026, the Government of Canada will provide up to $5 million to support continued development of event plans and budgets that will inform future decisions around specific funding for the event.