South Africa captain John Smit with the 2007 World Cup
Russia and Jamaica are among a record 10 unions to have expressed an interest in hosting the Rugby World Cup in either 2015 or 2019.
Australia, England, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Scotland, South Africa and Wales have confirmed their interest in staging the 2015 tournament.
And Australia, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Russia, Scotland, South Africa and Wales are keen on hosting in 2019.
South Africa are the World Cup holders, while New Zealand are the 2011 hosts.
Jamaica have never taken part in a World Cup, while Russia failed to make the 2007 event after losing to Portugal and Italy in qualifying.
"This is tremendous news for Rugby World Cup," IRB chairman Bernard Lapasset said.
"The fact that 10 member unions have signalled their intention to tender for the 2015 and 2019 tournaments reflects the growing global prestige of the Rugby World Cup.
"The IRB Council will announce the RWC 2015 and 2019 host unions in July 2009, six years prior to the first tournament and 10 years prior to the 2019 event," added Lapasset.
"This timetable reflects the scale and nature of the preparatory work in delivering this world class tournament."