The Vancouver Olympic Organizing Committee announced Wednesday that the men's and women's ice hockey competition at the 2010 Games will be played on an NHL-sized ice surface.

The announcement came at the conclusion of a two-day visit from the International Olympic Committee.

Vanoc estimates that it will save $10 million by using the smaller NHL ice because it won't have to make changes to arenas like GM Place, the home of the Vancouver Canucks.

International Ice Hockey Federation president Rene Fasel attended the meetings and called it a ''tough decision'' but said he supports it.

NHL rinks carry dimensions of 200 feet by 85 feet. International ice surfaces carry an additional 15 feet in width.

It will be the first time the smaller surface will be used in Olympic competition.