A landmark announcement in the history of FIFA’s development initiatives was made at the Home of FIFA today, 14 January 2014, with the direct financial support programmes of world football’s governing body hitting the USD 1 billion mark for the first time since their inception by FIFA President Blatter in 1999.
In the past 15 years, FIFA’s 209 member associations and six confederations have received a total of USD 778 million and USD 331 million respectively. The funds have been mainly used for infrastructure projects, planning and administration, technical development, men’s and women’s domestic competitions and youth football. The annual funds available under the Financial Assistance Programme (FAP) as determined by FIFA’s budget currently amount to USD 250,000 per member association and USD 5.5 million per confederation (through the development support provided to confederations under the programme).
The symbolic USD 1 billion mark was reached through the payment made to the Botswana FA. Under the relevant regulations, applications for FAP funds should be submitted to FIFA by 31 December of the previous year and/or by 30 June of the current year.
“What started as an ambitious goal of providing all member associations and confederations with unprecedented means to assist and complete FIFA’s work of promoting and developing football worldwide has now become a well-consolidated process that has contributed to enhance football structures in all continents, thus further promoting the unique popularity of our sport,” said FIFA President Blatter.
“The FAP has played a vital role in ensuring that all human beings willing to play football can do so. Even in the most difficult settings, such as Afghanistan and Somalia, we have seen very positive results.”
A total sum of more than USD 2 billion in development funds has been invested by FIFA since 1999. While the largest investment has been made through the FAP, the remaining funds have been channelled via Goal (USD 270 million), PERFORMANCE (USD 35 million budget in 2011-2014), educational and technical activities (USD 49 million budget in 2011-2014) and other initiatives.
According to the revised General Regulations for FIFA Development Programmes, member associations have to comply with important conditions and prerequisites in order to access the FIFA development programmes and funds that they are entitled to (FAP, Goal, PERFORMANCE, courses, etc.). These prerequisites are:
- Global annual accounts (not only FIFA funds) to be audited
- Auditing company to be appointed by the member association’s general assembly
- Auditing company to audit the annual financial statements presented by the member association’s executive body
- Annual audit report to be submitted to the member association’s general assembly
- A general secretary and a technical director to be employed
- All FIFA development programme transactions (not only FAP funds) to be combined in a unique “FIFA programme account” in the name of the member association or confederation. This bank account may not have a negative balance (overdraft) under any circumstances.