FIBA has been cooperating over the past months together with the IOC, the Association of Summer Olympic Federations (ASOIF) as well as with European and International Team Sport Federations UEFA, FIFA, EHF and IIHF to achieve a common proposal on the recognition of sport in the European Community Law.
During the recent meetings of all International Federations in Madrid, FIBA Secretary General Patrick Baumann presented to the General Assembly of the Association of Summer Olympic Federations (ASOIF) on 14th May 2003 the results of this joint work and the proposal for a draft article. The General Assembly unanimously approved it and forwarded its position to the International Olympic Committee for the official announcement made by the IOC on 17th May 2003 to the media.
The need for such an article was stressed and reinforced by the Spanish Secretary of State for Sport José Antonio Gómez Angulo during his welcoming remarks addressed at the opening of the General Assembly of FIBA-Europe in Sevilla.
During the same Assembly, FIBA Secretary General Patrick Baumann and FIBA-Europe President George Vassilakopoulos further developed the subject and informed all member national federations on the common efforts made by the international sports community. The General Assembly of FIBA-Europe unanimously supported these efforts.
"Thanks to the IOC and to the united position of all constituencies of the Olympic movement", said FIBA Secretary General Patrick Baumann, "this proposal for an article on Sport is a real step forward towards a legal system which, following the Nice Declaration on Sport, December 2000 in Nice, will allow the governing bodies for sports to operate in a framework which respects European Union law but at the same time recognizes the specificity of sport and the competence and autonomy of International Federations. For a Sport Federation it is extremely important to be able to protect the social, educational and cultural role that its sport plays in the European society and not to see it reduced essentially to an economical activity. This article will help European Union bodies better understand sport and Sport Federations to further improve their governance rules and to better promote their sport at all levels."
The draft article proposed by the Olympic sport movement and supported by FIBA and FIBA-Europe, will be published after the IOC has presented it to the European Union.