Four new nations join FIFA’s Goal Programme
© Foto-net

Four countries are set to become new beneficiaries of FIFA’s Goal Programme following approval by the Development Committee of world football’s governing body. The meeting, chaired by FIFA Vice-President Issa Hayatou in the presence of the chairman of the FIFA Audit and Compliance Committee, Domenico Scala, was opened today in Zurich by FIFA President Blatter.

The Goal newcomers are the British Virgin Islands (technical centre), Poland (nationwide grassroots education programme), Portugal (technical centre/headquarters) and Spain (headquarters upgrade). An additional 24 Goal projects (full list in the below attachment) were approved by the Development Committee, bringing the total number of supported projects to 668 across 202 member associations since the programme’s inception in 1999.

The Development Committee also confirmed the re-approval of Goal projects in the Faroe Islands, Tajikistan and Australia, with the latter using the funds for the implementation of an innovative girls’ football development programme. It’s the first time that a Goal project is used exclusively for the development of women’s football.

In addition, it was confirmed that eight more countries – Israel, Iceland, Spain, Finland, Norway, Gambia, Swaziland and Cape Verde – would join PERFORMANCE, FIFA’s football management programme that has already been implemented in 162 member associations.

As part of the diversification of FIFA’s development projects, the Development Committee also approved 25 initiatives within the scope of the Programme for Less-Privileged Member Associations. This programme aims at providing tailor-made assistance based on a series of parameters, such as national public policy, to promote sports, member associations’ financial situation, GDP, prospects for economic development, human development indicators and football development potential. The new beneficiaries are: Bangladesh, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Lebanon, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Chad, Congo, Congo DR, Djibouti, Gambia, Liberia, Mauritania, São Tomé e Príncipe, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, American Samoa, the Cook Islands, Papua New Guinea, Samoa and Vanuatu. Funds will be mostly used for the construction of football turf pitches.

Furthermore, nine projects were approved within the FIFA Income Generation Programme, a special initiative launched by the FIFA Executive Committee in 2011 with the objective of fostering revenue creation in member associations with high football development potential: Barbados (grandstand and ticketing solution development), Dominican Republic (improvement and rebranding of the national league), Jamaica (stakeholder engagement programme), Panama (improvement and rebranding of the national league), Suriname (infrastructure improvement and development), Trinidad and Tobago (merchandising and licensing programme), Fiji (development of futsal courts, accommodation and gym), Peru (IT registration and stakeholder pass programme) and Moldova (completion of indoor futsal hall).

“During the financial cycle 2011-14, we have witnessed a concrete diversification of our development assistance which has brought positive results to our member associations. For the next cycle our aim is to reinforce the support of national football competitions particularly at youth level,” said chairman Issa Hayatou.

“Besides ensuring an effective implementation of our development programmes, it’s our objective to further enhance monitoring in light of the General Regulations for FIFA Development Programmes,” commented FIFA Director of Member Associations and Development Thierry Regenass.

The overall rules and principles applicable to all development programmes for member associations and confederations are currently defined in the General Regulations for FIFA Development Programmes, approved by the FIFA Executive Committee in March 2013. Since September 2013, FIFA has been engaging its member associations in a landmark consultation process for the purposes of encouraging an exchange of views on the topic of development.