Glasgow has seen off Edinburgh in the race to win Scotland's bid to host the 2014 Commonwealth Games.
Glasgow hopes for an economic boost by winning the games
The Commonwealth Games Council for Scotland handed the city the Scottish bid because it believed it offered the best possible chance of success.
The council unanimously backed the city at a meeting in Stirling on Thursday.
Scotland and Glasgow may go up against rivals in South Africa, Wales, Singapore, Canada and New Zealand if the council decide to pursue a bid.
The council pointed out that the potential bid was still in its early stages and it would decide next year on whether to go for the games.
It also said its decision did not necessarily mean Edinburgh would not be involved in any final Scottish bid.
Louise Martin, chairwoman of the Commonwealth Games Council for Scotland, said: "It is always difficult to have to choose one over another but, based on the assessment, we were unanimous that working with Glasgow as lead city would give us the best possible chance of success in the future, should we decide to make a formal bid.
"However, it is important to stress this is really only the start of the process.
"Considerable work now needs to be done to establish if Scotland can put together a strong bid which we are confident will more than meet the requirements of the Commonwealth Games Federation and which also compares favourably against bids from other countries."
The council's decision to award Glasgow the honour followed a technical evaluation of both city's bids.
The candidates' proposed sporting venues and transport and accommodation arrangements were among the considerations taken into account.
Glasgow's proposal, with two sport venue clusters near a planned games village, was felt to offer a distinct advantage.
The city has received money from the Scottish Executive and sportscotland to develop a National Indoor Sports Arena.
It is also creating a regional indoor facility at Toryglen and upgrading Scotstoun Stadium.
Manchester staged the games two years ago
Glasgow City Council leader councillor Charlie Gordon asked for all of Scotland to unite behind the Glasgow bid.
He said: "I am naturally very pleased that Glasgow's bid for the 2014 Games has been given the green light by the Commonwealth Games Council for Scotland.
"I do believe our bid is strong and has a realistic chance of succeeding in the face of what is likely to be some very stiff competition from other Commonwealth cities."
A bid assessment group made up of Scottish sports chiefs will now be set up to launch a feasibility study into Glasgow's chances of hosting the event.
They will compare the merits of Glasgow - which has never hosted the games - with its international rivals and come back with a decision in summer 2005.
It is understood a bid alone would cost about £1m and staging the games would cost hundreds of millions of pounds.
First Minister Jack McConnell welcomed the announcement and said: "Glasgow's investment in
sport over recent years has put them on the international map for major events.
"I want Scotland to host major events and the Commonwealth Games is one of the best.
"A Commonwealth Games in Glasgow would be a fantastic occasion for our country and for sport."
The 2006 Games will be hosted by Melbourne in Australia while the 2010 Games have been awarded to New Delhi in India.