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France ready for Olympics despite ‘challenge’: Macron

France will “for sure” be ready to host the 2024 Olympic Games despite the numerous organisational challenges of hosting the event, President Emmanuel Macron said on Wednesday.

With a year to go to the opening ceremony of the Games, there have been concerns over France’s readiness on a range of issues from hotels to security.

“France is ready, it will be ready for sure,” Macron told Franceinfo radio in an interview from the French Pacific territory of New Caledonia which he is currently visiting.

He acknowledged there was “an organisational challenge”, citing issues including accommodation, ticketing, transport and security.

Macron insisted that France was ready for what could prove to be the biggest challenge of all — an opening ceremony on the waters of the River Seine in Paris.

He said authorities were “taking action well in advance” and “learning from other experiences and mobilising all our departments” to ensure the ceremony went off smoothly.

“It’s a lot of preparation, a lot of work… we will be ready and we are preparing for all scenarios with great professionalism,” he added.

Macron said the Games, which will be hosted mainly in Paris but also see events taking place in other regions, will show France at its very best.

Many of the showcase events will take place in the low-income and ethnically mixed suburb of Seine-Saint-Denis outside Paris while the sailing will take place in the southern city of Marseille and surfing on Tahiti in France’s Pacific territory of French Polynesia.

“It is a France proud of itself, a France that shines, a France that welcomes the world, a France that will show that it is capable of the very greatest, with its athletes and the wonderful spectacle of the opening ceremony,” Macron said.

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