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2019 Pacific Games
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2019 Pacific Games
2019 Pacific Games
Host city Apia
Country  Samoa
Nations participating ~24 (expected)
Athletes participating ~approximately 3,500 (expected)
Events 26 sports
Opening ceremony 8 July
Closing ceremony 20 July
Officially opened by Head of State of Samoa (expected)

The 2019 Pacific Games are scheduled to be the sixteenth edition of the Pacific Games. They will be held in Apia, Samoa .[1]

The event was initially awarded to Nuku?alofa, Tonga, but the Tongan government officially withdrew from hosting it in May 2017, amid concerns the country could face economic difficulties if it proceeded.[2]

Bidding process

First bidding process

In mid 2012, two cities were confirmed as serious bidders in hosting the 2019 Pacific Games. They were:

The final presentations of the bids were made on 19 October 2012 in Wallis & Futuna. Tahiti's presentation was led by the country's Minister for Education, Youth and Sports, Tauhiti Nena; Tonga's was led by Crown Prince Tupouto?a ?Ulukalala, by the President of the Tonga Association of Sport and National Olympic Committee, Lord Tupou, and by Minister for Sports Lord Vaea. Paea Wolfgramm, Tonga's only Olympic medallist at that time (he had won a silver medal in boxing at the 1996 Summer Olympics), spoke of the promise of sports development and was the highlight of both presentations. Tonga had never hosted the Games; its bid to host the 2015 Games had been defeated by Papua New Guinea's. Tahiti had hosted the Games twice, in 1971 and 1995.[3][4][5]

In its bid, French Polynesia emphasised "its successful experiences of hosting international sporting events". It noted that its planned investments in sports infrastructures would "intensify sport practice of several tens of thousands of citizens and rise to the high-level several hundreds of young Polynesians", and suggested that the Games would "contribute to a better insertion of our country" into the Pacific region, highlighting the positive values of a shared "Polynesian soul".[6]

In his written submission to the Pacific Games Council in April 2012, Tongan Prime Minister Lord Tu?ivakano referred to his country's transition to democracy with the November 2010 general election, and suggested that awarding the Games to Tonga would "send a strong and unmistakable signal in support of democracy in our region". The then-Minister for Sports Sosefo Vakata asked the Council to grant the Games to a country that had not hosted them yet, in the name of equality and so that Tonga might enjoy "the benefits that other bigger economies in the region have enjoyed since the Game's inception". He also reminded the Council that Tonga had the experience of having hosted the 1989 South Pacific Mini Games, though "nothing can equal the greatest gathering in the region which the Pacific Games is proud of". The country proposed an upgrade of its sports facilities, notably the Teufaiva Stadium for athletics, the Lototonga Football Complex, and the 'Atele Indoor Stadium to host six sporting events. A new sports complex would be built at Lototonga for a number of other events, as would a Lototonga Aquatic Centre.[7]

Following its successful bid, Tonga hoped for investments to build venues and facilities, particularly from China and Japan.[3]

Tongan withdrawal

On Monday 15 May 2017 the Prime Minister announced that Tonga is to withdraw from hosting the 2019 Pacific Games amid concerns the country could face economic difficulties if it staged the event. A spokesman for the Tongan Cabinet told Kaniva News that Prime Minister ?Akilisi P?hiva had decided to save the country from a "costly mistake".[8][9]

Second bidding process

Apia was selected as the host city of the 2019 Pacific Games

Following the withdrawal of Tonga as hosts, the Pacific Games Council set a deadline date (31 July 2017) of interested countries that would be willing to replace Tonga. By the 31 July deadline, three countries expressed their interest in hosting the games. They are:[10]

2019 Pacific Games bidding results
City Nation Votes
Apia  Samoa Unanimous

Participating countries

The 22 Pacific Games Association member countries and territories plus Australia and New Zealand are expected to compete at this games.


A total of 26 sports will be contested at this edition of the games.[11][12]

Medal table


  1. ^ "Samoa Set To Host Pacific Games In 2019". Pacific Islands Report. 1 September 2017. Archived from the original on 2 September 2017. Retrieved 2017. 
  2. ^ "Tonga withdraws from hosting 2019 Pacific Games". insidethegames.biz. 15 May 2017. 
  3. ^ a b "Tonga to host 2019 Pacific Games", ABC Radio Australia, 19 October 2012
  4. ^ "Tonga to host 2019 Pacific Games", Matangi Tonga, 19 October 2012
  5. ^ "PNG2015 - PAPUA NEW GUINEA WINS", Pacific Games Council, 1 April 2011
  6. ^ French Polynesian bid for the 2019 Games, Pacific Games Council
  7. ^ Tongan bid for the 2019 Games, Pacific Games Council
  8. ^ "Tonga withdraws from hosting 2019 Pacific Games over costs". Stuff (Fairfax Media). 16 May 2017. 
  9. ^ "Tonga withdraws from hosting 2019 Pacific Games". insidethegames.biz. 15 May 2017. 
  10. ^ http://www.abc.net.au/news/programs/pacific-beat/2017-08-01/samoa,-guam,-tahiti-confirmed-as-bidders-for-2019/8762502
  11. ^ "Samoa confident of hosting a successful 2019 Pacific Games". PNG Facts. 18 December 2017. Retrieved 2018. 
  12. ^ "2019 Pacific Games program confirmed". Inside the Games. 11 June 2018. Retrieved 2018. 

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