Oleg Matytsin spoke following a heads of delegation visit to the former Kazakhstan capital ©FISU

Next year's Winter Universiade in Almaty should be broadcast in 100 countries, International University Sports Federation (FISU) President Oleg Matytsin has declared during an inspection visit to Kazakhstan.

It came as heads of delegations from many of the countries due to participate in the former capital city visit in order to check facilities and monitor progress.

"We've partnered with Eurosport to broadcast the Winter Universiade live in 100 countries of the world," Matytsin claimed.

"Residents of Almaty city should realised that the Universiade sports facilities will be used in the future in order to develop mass sports."

He was joined by officials from countries including the United States, Russia, China, Japan, the UK, Germany, Italy, France, Canada, Sweden, Poland.

This was billed as a key visit following the raising of concerns last year following substantial cuts to Almaty's budget.

A decision was taken in January to slash costs surrounding the 2017 Winter Universiade from 32 billion tenge (£66 million/$94 million/€83 million) to 17 billion tenge (£35 million/$50 million/€44 million) due to fears over Kazkahstan’s economy.

This caused delays to construction and raised fears venues would not be completed on time.

Officials from countries expected to participate at the Winter Universiade pictured during their inspection visit ©FISU
Officials from countries expected to participate at the Winter Universiade pictured during their inspection visit ©FISU

Matytsin has now given a far more positive appraisal, however.

"We understand that we are in a country with a long history, tradition and rich culture, which is famous not only for its hospitality but also experienced in organising sporting and other international events," he said.

"It is symbolic that we came on the eve of the celebration of the 1,000th anniversary of the city of Almaty, and on the eve of the 25th anniversary of Kazakhstan's Independence. 

"The Universiade is one of the stages of development of the city and the country. 

"It provides an opportunity for young people and the organisations that participate in the Universiade, to demonstrate once again the country's potential and the potential of this city. 

"I hope that the Universiade will leave a rich legacy that will be used by all its citizens."

Almaty is using the event to further raise its winter sporting profile after its impressive but ultimately unsuccessful bid for the 2022 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games, where it was defeated by Beijing by four votes at last year's International Olympic Committee Session in Kuala Lumpur.

Action is due to take place from January 29 to February 8.

Over 2,000 athletes from more than 55 countries of the world are set to participate. 

Krasnoyarsk in Russia is still expected to host the following edition in 2019 despite the damning revelations in the McLaren Report about systemic doping during the Kazan 2013 summer event also held in the nation.