The province of Limburg will support Maastricht in their desire to host the Eurovision Song Contest. The most southern province of the Netherlands is hopeful that its capital will get the prestigious job of hosting the contest in 2020.
The most European city
In a letter the involved parties have sent to the organisers at NPO, they call Maastricht the most European city of the country. Back in 1992, the Treaty of Maastricht was signed here, establishing the European Union and starting the road to the European currency Euro. It is also the centre of the Euregio Meuse-Rhine, which helps its infrastructure as over four million people and 250,000 companies call the region their home. The letter has been signed by Mayor Annemarie Penn-te Strake, King’s Commissioner Theo Bovens and CEO of the MECC Rob van de Wiel. Together, they call for the NPO to award them the Eurovision Song Contest next year.
World famous violin player André Rieu has also backed the Maastricht bid, as he hopes to welcome the event to his home town. Local parties are suggesting Rieu should be the interval act, if the contest actually did go to the absolute south of the country.
Wih their call, Limburg become the third province to back the desire of a city. Earlier, Noord-Brabant outlined their intentions to submit either ‘s-Hertogenbosch or Breda as hosting cities. Fryslân have done the same with their capital Leeuwarden.
NPO have confirmed to us at ESCXTRA.com that provincial or regional bids are more than welcome. They added that Limburg has indeed teamed up with Maastricht for next year’s hosting adventure. The exact size of the MECC, the venue proposed by Maastricht, is unknown. Maastricht say 20,000 people could fit in there. The official size however suggests it would be smaller than the Tel Aviv Expo. In terms of hotel rooms, Maastricht say they have over 5,500 available. Airports are close, with an airport near Maastricht itself. Other airports are those in Eindhoven, Frankfurt am Main, Düsseldorf, Liège and Amsterdam.
NPO deny radio dj’s comments
Radio DJ Giel Beelen caused uproar in the Netherlands yesterday when he suggested the City Bid process were fake. He claimed NPO had already agreed with Maastricht to bring the contest to the Limburg capital.
As you may expect, NPO deny that any of this is true. In a statement to ESCXTRA.com, they say that the organisers have not yet decided all of the criteria and conditions. Therefore, a statement like Beelen’s is premature and false. They add that they will handle the City Bid process with great care.