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IOC chief downplays worries about tight construction schedules for Pyeongchang Games in 2018

Thomas Bach, left, president of the IOC beats a Korean traditional drum as Hwang Chang-gyu, chairman of KT, smiles after the signing of a partnership between Pyeongchang's organizing committee and KT in Seoul, South Korea, Tuesday, July 1, 2014. Under their partnership, KT will provide high-speed Internet service throughout the competition using up-to-date technology and will help Pyeongchang host the most advanced Olympic Games in terms of information and communication technology. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)

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Thomas Bach, left, president of the IOC beats a Korean traditional drum as Hwang Chang-gyu, chairman of KT, smiles after the signing of a partnership between Pyeongchang's organizing committee and KT in Seoul, South Korea, Tuesday, July 1, 2014. Under their partnership, KT will provide high-speed Internet service throughout the competition using up-to-date technology and will help Pyeongchang host the most advanced Olympic Games in terms of information and communication technology. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)

PYEONGCHANG, South Korea - IOC President Thomas Bach has downplayed concerns about tight construction schedules for Pyeongchang's 2018 Winter Games.

Bach was in Pyeongchang on Wednesday for a briefing in which representatives from future host cities received advice from Sochi's Olympic organizing committee.

Asked over tight construction schedules, Bach said: "It is not new that when it comes to the organization of games that, in one or the other project, there are some delays in comparison to the previous plans, so there's no reason right now to become nervous."

He said the IOC remains confident that Pyeongchang can organize an "excellent" Winter Games.

Following the briefing from Sochi officials, Bach said in a statement that the 2014 event continued the growth of the winter games, and described it as "the athletes' games" due to positive feedback from competitors.

"The Olympic Winter Games have been going from strength to strength with each passing edition, and Sochi has continued that trend," Bach said in an IOC statement. "Television audiences broke all records with a broadcast audience growth of 11 per cent from Vancouver 2010, while here in Korea, over 38 million people tuned in to watch Sochi 2014."

Pyeongchang is bringing the Winter Olympics to South Korea for the first time.

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