The FIFA-Local Organising Committee (LOC) Management Board for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™ convened its first meeting at the Ministry of Sports, Tourism and Youth Policy in Moscow on Monday 10 October 2011. The board’s role is to jointly govern the preparations for Russia 2018 and is scheduled to meet, at this stage, twice a year. The board consists of representatives of the senior management of FIFA, the LOC and the Ministry of Sports, Tourism and Youth Policy, led by Vitaly Mutko, Chairman of the Local Organising Committee and Minister of Sport, Tourism and Youth Policy, and FIFA Secretary General Jérôme Valcke.

The LOC Chairman gave a detailed update on the structure of the local FIFA World Cup organisation and proposed developments for the infrastructure required in Russia for the hosting of an event of the magnitude of a FIFA World Cup. Furthermore, the board discussed the process of developing federal law for staging the 2018 FIFA World Cup in the Russian Federation and the overall vision for the event.

Vitaly Mutko explained: “We are pleased to announce that the legislative process for the dedicated FIFA World Cup law, the legal foundation for the successful staging of the FIFA World Cup, has begun already. The FIFA World Cup law will be introduced to the State Duma by the government in the first quarter of 2012. In this context, I would once again confirm the Russian government’s commitment to fulfil all government guarantees in preparation for the tournament."

It is amazing to see the great enthusiasm, partnership and level of commitment by the LOC and the Russian government at this stage.

Jérôme Valcke, FIFA Secretary General

Valcke added that he was very pleased with the progress achieved since the hosting rights were awarded to Russia ten months ago. “It is amazing to see the great enthusiasm, partnership and level of commitment by the LOC and the Russian government at this stage," he said. "Now we just have to ensure that we keep up this working spirit as there is a lot to be accomplished in Russia. But I can re-assure you of the full support of the FIFA team.”

LOC CEO Alexey Sorokin explained the procedure for selecting the host cities for the 2018 FIFA World Cup. At present, 13 cities and 15 stadiums are included in the hosting concept. They are divided into four geographical clusters: Central (Moscow), North (St. Petersburg, Kaliningrad), Volga (Yaroslavl, Kazan, Nizhniy Novgorod, Samara, Volgograd, Saransk), South (Sochi, Rostov-on-Don, Krasnodar) and Yekaterinburg in the Urals.

The announcement of the host cities has been brought forward to October 2012 in order to give all involved a better opportunity to prepare the 2018 FIFA World Cup. The meeting was followed by the First Candidate Host City Workshop with representatives from all 13 cities, which officially kicked off the selection process and will be followed by a FIFA technical requirements workshop in February 2012 as well as an inspection tour.