Beijing will host the 2008 Games while London was chosen two years ago to stage the 2012 Olympics.
Chicago won the nomination for the U S city to bid for the 2016 Games earlier this year while bids will most likely also come from Tokyo, Rio de Janeiro, Rome, Madrid and Qatar.
Qatar's capital Doha hosted this year's Asian Games.
New Delhi in India had initially contemplated a bid but has now chosen to focus on a bid for the 2020 Games.
The IOC said in a statement national Olympic committees had until September 13 to inform the IOC of any applicant city from their territory.
The IOC will then proceed with an examination of replies and will come up with a shortlist of candidate cities in June 2008.
The final vote for the 2016 host city will take place in Copenhagen on October 2, 2009 during the IOC's 121st session.
REUTERS AKD HT1957