LONDON/LIMA: Britain’s International Trade Minister Greg Hands has signed an arrangement with the organisers of the 2019 Pan-American Games, making the UK the lead partner in helping deliver what claims to be the fourth largest sporting event in the world.

The games, hosted in Peru for the first time in Lima in 2019, will bring together the nations of North and South America, with more than  5,000 competitors in 36 different sports.

Hands said: “Since the Sydney Games in 2000 the UK has been involved in every major global sporting tournament offering support in areas like construction, transport and event organisation.

“This new agreement will deliver that world-leading expertise to help make the Lima 2019 Games a success, creating opportunities for UK companies and a lasting legacy for the Peruvian people as we did at London 2012.”

As part of the agreement, a team of UK experts with experience running over 100 major sporting events including the 2012 Olympics will work closely with the Lima 2019 organising committee, helping it deliver the infrastructure and organisation of the games on-time and on-budget.

Contracts worth hundreds of millions of pounds will be open to UK companies to help deliver the organisation of the games in areas like event management, security and construction where the UK is a world-leader having been involved in the organisation of every major international sporting event since the 2000 Olympics.

Carlos Neuhaus, president of the Lima 2019 organising committee, said: “This arrangement with the UK government is fundamental to our progress in successfully organising and delivering the Lima 2019 Games. We are thrilled to be working in close collaboration with our British partners, benefitting from their extensive expertise to make the Lima 2019 Games a success.”