World Para Swimming announced that Kuching, Malaysia has been selected to host the 2019 World Para Swimming Championships. This will be the ninth World Para Swimming Championships, and the first to be held in Asia. The meet is scheduled to be held from July 29th- August 4th, 2019, and is expected to host about 600 swimmers from 70 countries. This announcement came just a few weeks after the 2017 Southeast Asia (SEA) Games were held from August 21st-26th in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Andrew Parsons, the newly elected President of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC), said during the announcement, “The coming years are going to be an exciting time for Para sports in the continent and Kuching will see the world’s best Para swimmers competing one year before the Paralympic Games in Tokyo.”
The excitement can be seen already in Malaysia. After the announcement, the president of the Paralympic Council of Malaysia, Mr. SM Nasarudin Tan Sri Datuk Seri Utama SM Nasimuddin, released a statement in which he expressed his thanks to the IPC for its “willingness to develop NPCs (National Paralympic Council) worldwide by giving an opportunity to cultivate the organizational capabilities to host major international events.” He also added that NPC Malaysia “shall endeavor to deliver the Championships to the best our our ability.”
Honorable Datuk Haji Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah, the Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture, Youth and Sports also released a statement thanking the IPC. He also went on to state Malaysia plans to “deliver the Championships beyond the expectation of all participating countries.”, and that those who come to the event will be “enchanted with the natural wilderness that we have to offer.”
Mexico City was set to host the 2017 World Para Swimming Championships beginning on September 30th, however, the event has been postponed by the IPC for an “unspecified amount of time” following the fatal 7.1 magnitude earthquake that struck Mexico City on Tuesday, September 19th.