For the World Ski Cup we will build spectator stands, a car park and a press center, said the Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports of Andorra Olga Gelabert

olga gelabertThe Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports of Andorra, Olga Gelabert, told about the main cultural and sports events in Andorra (Pyrenees):

Interview : Irina Rybalchenko

What is the ministry’s budget for 2017?

The budget for this year is 7,809,500 euros. For comparison: last year the budget was 6,045,760 euros.

What are the main cultural and sports events this year?

We actively cooperate with the Andorran Ministry of Tourism, which has a core budget for all key events. Our ministry is responsible for local events such as Borrufa (in conjunction with the International Ski Federation) – this event is designed for young people between the ages of 13 and 16 and involves competition in super giant slalom and skiing races. Competitions were held in Arcalis in January 2017.

In May we are holding a mass race “Esport per tothom” (Sport for All). This year all participants will receive yellow T-shirts (last year they were orange). In 2016 the event was attended by about 3,000 people, in other words the percentage of participants from the total population is very high. It was a very impressive event – it appeared as if the whole city was orange.

In 2019 Andorra will hold the World Ski Cup (FIS ALPINE SKIING). How is the ministry preparing for this event? What is the budget for the event?

The main organizer of the event is the Andorran Ministry of Tourism, headed by Minister Francesc Camp. I can confirm that the government of Andorra has decided to build additional infrastructure at the finish line at the foot of the Avet track in the Soldeu-El Tarter sector of Grandvalira. New elements of the infrastructure will improve the safety of the route. The entire new infrastructure will cover an  area of 11,300m2.

The project is a national one and provides for the additional construction of an underground car park with 468 places, as well as spectator stands. In addition, a press center will be built with the possibility to broadcast online. The project will be implemented in accordance with the recommendations of the International Ski Federation (FIS).

Andorra will be represented by 3-4 athletes. Our ministry will allocate an additional budget for training. Currently, the budget of the Andorran Ski Federation is 900,000 euros. Within two years, it will be increased to 1,000,000 euros.

The final stage of the competition will be held in February 2019.

Who will represent Andorra?

So far I can name two skiers: Joan Verdu and Mireia (Mimi) Guillierrez.

Are there many sports federations in Andorra and how many members are there in them?

Today there are 31 sports federations: the Cycling Federation (223 participants), Basketball Federation (670 participants), Athletics Federation (514 participants), Taekwondo Federation (308 participants), Federation of Adapted Sports (40 members), Federation of water sports (20 participants), Judo Federation and associated disciplines (308 participants), Federation of Sporting Shooting (386 participants), Table Tennis Federation (39 members), Tennis Federation (152 participants), Swimming Federation (343 members), Federation of Archery  (72 members), Handball Federation (107 members), Volleyball Federation (141 participants), Sailing Federation (59 participants), Federation of Rhythmic Gymnastics (430 participants), Federation of Mountain Ski and Winter Sports (1368 members), Federation Equestrian Sports (130 participants), Olympic Federation (97 members), Ice Sports Federation (135 participants), Federation of Golf (182 participants), Rugby Federation (265 participants), Karate Federation (262 members), Chess Federation (81 Member), Federation of Mountain Sports (826 members), Motor Sport Federation (204 members) , Federation of Petanque and Associated Disciplines (113 participants), Federation of Figure Skating (164 participants), Kung Fu Federation (170 participants) and the Football Federation (2657 members).

There are also sports clubs: the Andorra Rugby XV (251 members), the Andorran Football Club (52 members), the Andorra Basketball Club (321 members), the Andorra Volleyball Club (159 members) and the Andorran Automobile Club (78 members).

What are the main cultural activities of the principality of this year? And which are your ministry in charge of?

Undoubtedly, the main project is the Thyssen Museum. This is the cultural project of the year. The opening of the museum cost us about 1 million euros, and every year we will invest about half of this amount to change the exhibition, and on the logistics, insurance and security.

From the current events I can name an exhibition in ARTALROC by the Spanish artist Arranz-Bravo. Our ministry also coordinates music concerts in Ordino. We also participate in financing the annual jazz festival Andorra SaxFest – the ministry’s budget is 17,000 euros per year for the next three years.

The Government of Andorra has increased by almost 50% the subsidies for cultural projects. Who will receive them this year?

We selected 40 projects from the submitted 55. The total amount of subsidies is 150,000 euros. In particular, these are projects which involve artistic creativity, literature, fine arts, as well as funds to finance these cultural events, events related to the promotion of the traditions of Andorra, and projects to promote Andorran artists.

Does Andorra produce its own cinema and TV series?

About two months ago, Andorra launched a TV series “Felix” for the Movistar TV channel.  A famous Argentinean actor  Leonardo Sbaraglia is involved. The director of the series is the Andorran Edu Ruano. The shooting took place in Ordino and ended the other day, at the beginning of May.

On 13th May, the 57th Biennale opens in Venice. Who will represent Andorra this year?

Eve Ariza won the contest with her installation “Whisper” – this is an object with 10,000 “mouths”, which are made from the bottoms of clay bowls.

Which cultural international events has the country participated in?

One of the most recent examples is the 54th book fair for children and youth of Catalonia and the Balearic Islands (Spain). The fair was held in Valencia from 3rd to 6th April 2017. Andorra had its showcase of 176m2, where the books of Andorran authors were presented in Catalan language. The exhibition was held thanks to the participation of the Valencian Ministry of Education, the Catalan Association of Book Publishers, the Association of Writers in Catalan, the Association of Illustrators of Catalonia, the Barcelona Library, the Catalan audiovisual media, and other organizations which  promote the Catalan language.

When will the casino be built in Andorra?

In June, the results of the competition will be known. Now we are talking about three possible places – the Congress Center in Andorra la Vella, the new office of Andorra Telecom “Cloud” and Caldea.

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