Right after the end of the Olympic Games in Beijing attention is already drawn to the next big multi-sport event under the patronage of the IOC. The 8th World Games will take place in Chinese Taipei from 16 to 26 July 2009.
They will be hosted by the harbour city Kaohsiung, 400 kilometres from the capital Taipei, in the south of the island near the Chinese mainland coast. The organizer is the International World Games Association (IWGA). The World Games features the best 3,500 sportsmen and women from 32 sports federations that are currently not on the Olympic programme.
The competition programme of The World Games includes, among other sports, Squash, Sumo, Dance Sports, Rugby, Billiards, Tug of War, Gymnastics, Lifesaving and Skydiving. Following their participation in the Beijing Olympic Games, the best Softball nations will also compete in Kaohsiung. Softball will be one of the demonstration sports at the Kaohsiung Games. After Beijing, Softball will no longer be on the Olympic programme and will now present itself under the umbrella of The World Games.
For Chinese Taipei the organization of The World Games is a totally new experience. It is the first time that the island hosts a multi-sport event. The organizers have made a commitment to organize the best World Games ever. The host city Kaohsiung, a city with 1,5 million inhabitants and one of the world's most important container harbours, is currently building a Main Stadium for 45,000 spectators and an indoor arena for an audience of 15,000. Both sport venues will be ready for the event in July 2009. IOC President Jacques Rogge has appointed the IOC Member from Chinese Taipei, Mr C.K. Wu, as an Observer on behalf of the IOC.
In 2005 The World Games took place in Duisburg/Germany. On that occasion more than 500,000 spectators flocked to the multi-sport event. The 7th World Games received TV coverage in 120 countries across the globe.