U18 Worlds in Basel & Porrentruy
by Martin Merk|22 JUL 2022
Basel together with Porrentruy will host the 2023 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship. It will be the fourth World Championship in the city after three men’s Worlds.
photo: Basel Tourism
The 2023 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship in Switzerland will be hosted in the northwest part of the country in Basel and Porrentruy from 20 to 30 April 2023.

Following the recent allocation to Switzerland by the 2022 IIHF Annual Congress, the Swiss Ice Hockey Federation chose Basel and Porrentruy as host cities. It will be the third U18 Worlds in the country after Kloten/Weinfelden in 2000 and Zug/Lucerne in 2015.

The SIHF selected the venues after an intense process taking into consideration the IIHF requirements for the event, the facilities for teams, fans and scouts, hotel capacities, logistics, public transportation, distances and costs.

“It wasn’t an easy decision because we had interesting bids,” said SIHF CEO Patrick Bloch, who also underlined the desire to consider different regions for the upcoming IIHF events in Switzerland as the 2026 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship will take place in Zurich and Fribourg while the 2024 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 Women’s World Championship is planned in southern Switzerland at venues to be determined.

“Due to the entered bids, the sport political and language situation and the financial support of the applicants we eventually decided for Basel as main venue,” said Bloch while Porrentruy in the region of Ajoie will serve as secondary venue. He added that the Swiss Ice Hockey Federation is convinced to have created an excellent position for a great tournament with Basel as a well-known large city with good public transportation connections, an airport and international flair while Porrentruy will represent the French-speaking part of Switzerland and is well-known in the country for its hockey passion.
Basel at the border to Germany and France is the second-largest city of the German-speaking area in Switzerland with 174,000 inhabitants in the city and 830,000 in the metropolitan area and has previously been a host of the men’s senior IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship in 1939, 1953 and 1998. Games will be held at St. Jakob-Arena with a capacity for 6,612 spectators. The home arena of EHC Basel was built in 2002 and is located at a sports complex next to the multifunctional St. Jakobshalle, which hosted the Worlds in 1998, and the football stadium St. Jakob-Park.
Porrentruy in the French-speaking canton of Jura is located about one hour away with a direct train connection or by car from Basel and a 50-minute journey from the airport of Basel. The town of 6,400 inhabitants is the capital of the region of Ajoie. It is best known in Switzerland for its hockey passion and its club HC Ajoie, which earned promotion to the top-tier National League in 2021. The Raiffeisen Arena with a capacity for 4,761 spectators was renovated in 2020 and will serve as the secondary venue for the U18 Worlds.

Host Switzerland is seeded in Group B together with the United States, Finland, Latvia and Norway. Group A includes defending champion Sweden, Czechia, Canada, Germany and Slovakia.