LONDON (AP) — IOC President Thomas Bach says it is in the interest of all parties for NHL players to participate in the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

The NHL and International Ice Hockey Federation have been negotiating over travel and insurance costs for the top players to go to the games. The International Olympic Committee does not want to cover those costs as it has at the previous five Winter Games.

Bach tells The Olympic Channel in an interview that "all the rational arguments are speaking in favor of participation."

He says "it is in the interest of both (the IIHF and NHL) and also of the IOC to have the best players at the Olympic Games."

Bach says "the players want to play in the Olympic Games anyway so NHL would also make their players happy."

The IOC chief adds: "The games are about the best athletes of the world so we would also be very happy to welcome them."