Upon arrival, President Putin inspected the new terminal of the Kazan International Airport built especially for the Universiade, and the new station of the intermodal aeroexpress service.
The President travelled to the city from the airport using the aeroexpress train. On the train, Head of the Republic of Tatarstan Rustam Minnikhanov and First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov told Vladimir Putin about preparations for the Universiade.
The opening ceremony for the University Games was held at the new football stadium Kazan Arena, that seats 45,000 spectators.
Before the ceremony, Mr Putin met with members of Russia’s team and wished the athletes success at the World Summer University Games.
The 27th World University Summer Games is taking place in Kazan from July 6 to 17. It will bring together more than 10,000 athletes from 175 countries. 351 sets of medals will be distributed across 27 sports.
Speech at the opening ceremony of the Summer Universiade in Kazan
“We have done everything possible so that participants in this sporting event feel at home, are able to achieve outstanding results, and can withstand fierce competition and a difficult struggle.”
President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Ladies and gentlemen, dear friends,
On behalf of hospitable Russia I welcome you to the World Summer Universiade in Kazan. Isenmesez, Welcome!
Kazan is one of the oldest and most beautiful cities of our vast and multi-ethnic country. And successful, young athletes are gathered here today.
Friends, you represent different countries and continents, but during these July days you are joined in the World Summer Universiade, the scale of which is comparable to the Olympic Games.
We have done everything possible so that participants in this sporting event feel at home, are able to achieve outstanding results, and can withstand fierce competition and a difficult struggle.
Of course, the strongest will win, but the atmosphere and spirit of the Universiade will always be with each one of you.
You all share a love for sport, the highest ideals of fair competition and camaraderie, and hopes for success and victory.
In these ceremonial moments your hearts beat in unison, you’re together, shoulder to shoulder, and you share common feelings and ideas.
I hope that all of you can break new limits to achieve new personal records.
Let these seconds of struggle and triumph be vivid and memorable. And let them remain with you for life. Good luck!
* * *
Vladimir Putin: I declare the 27th World Summer Universiade open!