Estimated reading time: 3 minutes
In the picturesque town of Zakopane, Poland, the European Sports and Tourism Congress took place from September 26th to 28th, 2023, marking its second edition. The event brought together representatives from the Polish sports and tourism industries. This year, the Congress also served as an opportunity to reflect on the success of the 3rd European Games in Kraków-Małopolska, for which the Małopolska region played a co-hosting role, responsible for organizing the Congress.
During the Congress, two significant announcements illuminated the world of sports. Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, along with Minister of Sport and Tourism Kamil Bortniczuk, Polish Volleyball Association President Sebastian Świderski, and captain of the Polish volleyball team Bartosz Kurek, revealed that Poland would host the 2027 Men’s Volleyball World Championships.
Polish volleyball is on its way to becoming a symbol of quality and excellence. Everything that has been happening in Polish volleyball for years represents the highest standards. As government officials, we aim to continue supporting the development of this beautiful sport. The best volleyball fans in the world deserve the opportunity to watch their heroes up close, cheer for them, and contribute to their continued success
Minister Kamil Bortniczuk stated, accompanying President Andrzej Duda in announcing another crucial decision.
It is our ambition and intention to begin efforts to host the Summer Olympics in our country in 2036
President Duda conveyed.
We believe our country is a suitable choice. We have proven in recent years that we are adept and trusted organizers of international sports events. We successfully hosted the 3rd European Games Kraków-Małopolska 2023, welcoming 7,000 athletes and providing top-notch facilities. Moreover, we organized 74 international events last year alone. This year, we will surpass that record with 86 events. All of this enhances the credibility of our country as a reliable partner
Minister Kamil Bortniczuk emphasized.
The Congress featured international discussions on the opportunities presented by sports and tourism. Dignitaries from Bulgaria, Montenegro, and Kosovo, including ministers and deputy ministers of sports and tourism, as well as representatives from international sports federations, were among the attendees.
One of the key topics addressed during the Congress was the role of sports diplomacy, especially in light of the conflict in Ukraine. Minister Bortniczuk highlighted the need to prevent sports from being used for political purposes and instead focus on promoting universal values like respect for human rights and sovereignty, central to sporting competition under national flags.
Poland has been actively involved in the campaign to exclude Russian and Belarusian athletes from international sports events following the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The successful hosting of the European Games without the participation of aggressor countries showcased that such events can be organized without them.
The Congress also delved into the theme of modern technology’s influence on sports and tourism. Contemporary sports increasingly integrate robotics and artificial intelligence, with electronic sports (e-sports) gaining prominence. The discussion revolved around promoting e-sports in a way that ensures safety and health, especially for young participants.
The Congress culminated with the Małopolska Sports Gala on the first day and the Sports Ambassadors Gala, featuring President Andrzej Duda, on the second day.
As Poland sets its sights on hosting the Olympics, Minister Kamil Bortniczuk affirmed the government’s commitment to supporting sports at all levels. He stressed the importance of sports in shaping strong, capable, and intelligent citizens and outlined various initiatives, including infrastructure modernization, scholarship programs, and more.
The European Sports and Tourism Congress, in just its second edition, has solidified Poland’s standing as a prominent player in the world of sports events. It is now recognized as a leader, particularly in Central Europe, in organizing large-scale sports events.
With its dynamic program and focus on innovation, the Congress has the potential to inspire new solutions and opportunities, especially at the intersection of sports and tourism.