FIFA is contemplating a new approach to the marketing of the FIFA World Cup when it is held in Japan and Korea Republic in 2002. A proposal submitted to the FIFA Executive Committee at its meeting in Zurich, for the marketing rights for 2002 (and possibly also 2006) to be handled in a similar manner as the television rights for the event -- with FIFA retaining ownership of the rights and an agency commercialising these rights on FIFA's behalf and with a certain fixed guarantee and a share of any profits beyond a fixed level of income -- is to be the main subject of the next Executive meeting in September.
The meeting, chaired by the FIFA President Dr. João Havelange, heard that both Japan and Korea Republic had already been informed of the intended approach, and that the co-hosts of the 2002 World Cup were now co-operating well after initial difficulties. It was also confirmed that the two host countries may each appoint up to six official suppliers or service companies, non-competitive with the Official Sponsors, and that each association will retain all the revenue from ticket sales for the matches in its territory.
With regard to the television rights for the 2002 and 2006 FIFA World Cups, the FIFA President reported that FIFA had received extensive financial guarantees on the part of FIFA's contractual partners. It was stressed that it remained FIFA's objective to maximise the audience for the matches in each of the interested countries.
Looking ahead to the FIFA World Cup in 2006, the Executive appointed the FIFA World Cup Planning Group to finalise instructions for national associations interested in applying to host the 2006 finals, in order to avoid excessive promotional campaigns and spending.
Julio Grondona (Argentina) has automatically become the Senior Vice-President of FIFA, and the President of CONCACAF, Jack Warner (Trinidad and Tobago), has become a FIFA Vice-President, following the death in January of Guillermo Cañedo (Mexico), whose passing was honoured by a minute's silence by the Committee. Chuck Blazer (United States) joined the Executive as a member for CONCACAF, while Worawi Makudi (Thailand) was welcomed as the new additional representative of the Asian Football Confederation.
Mr. Blazer's appointment had been contested by three of the five national associations of the northern zone of CONCACAF. However, the FIFA Legal Affairs Committee found that Mr. Blazer had been designated in conformity with the FIFA and CONCACAF Statutes.
Because of the increasingly complex situation regarding the international and intercontinental transfer of players – as reflected by the more than 30 cases dealt with on Friday by the FIFA Committee for the Status and Transfer of Players - a specialist working group will study a new global system for the transfer of players. The Executive did not ratify all aspects of the Emergency Committee decision extending the so-called Bosman ruling to cover also non-EU players moving between two EU clubs, but decided instead to allow a two-year transitional period for the introduction of new regulations for such players. The need was also reiterated to further define and strengthen the regulations governing players' agents.
FIFA's disciplinary measures are to be re-drafted, with the assistance of the International Centre of Sports Studies at the Swiss University of Neuchâtel, in order to make certain measures more stringent and generally to bring them more into line with the relevant requirements of modern law.
The Laws of the Game have been totally revised into a new and more simple text, which will enter into force on 1 July this year. (Note to Editors: Special Media Information on the new Laws of the Game is attached to this release. Further information on downloading the revised Laws in various formats via FTP will be available on FIFA On-Line from the middle of next week.)
There was general agreement on the need for the FIFA Referees' Committee to accelerate the process of introducing professional refereeing, with a small band of elite referees, which would also serve to reduce the risk of attempted corruption of referees in key matches.
The Working Group for the Good of the Game was asked to pursue its proposals for eliminating corruption and racism in football, and also to investigate the growing influence of commercial entities in the sport, a trend which risks undermining the authority of the national associations.
A specialist group is to give further study to finding adequate space in the international match calendar for a world club championship. The basic format would be for a tournament of eight teams (the six continental club champions, the host country’s champion club and the winners of the most recent European-South American Cup/Toyota Cup), in July every two years from 1999.
The organisation of the World Youth Championship for the FIFA/Coca-Cola Cup in 1999 was awarded to Nigeria, on condition that all necessary requirements are satisfactorily fulfilled in adequate time. The 2001 finals were allocated to Argentina. (The Under-17 World Championship in 1999 had already been awarded to New Zealand.)
The extra meeting of the Executive is to take place in Cairo in the first three days of the FIFA Under-17 World Championship, in order to alleviate the agenda for the meeting scheduled to taken place in Marseilles at the time of the World Cup Final Draw on 4 December.
The Executive Committee agenda contained 31 points and the meeting lasted 4 hours 15 minutes (09.00 - 13.15).