Category Archives: Sport

Whether practised at professional or amateur level, on a regular or occasional basis, sport has become one of the most widespread human activities. Beyond the pure health aspects, sport contributes to social integration, is part of the non-formal education process, encourages intercultural exchanges and creates employment within the European Union (EU). Sports policy remains essentially an intergovernmental matter. Nevertheless, European institutions have an important role to play in terms of consultation and promotion, be it in relation to sport in general, the role of sport in terms of the economy and society, or its part in combating racism, violence and the use of drugs.

Urgent measures to be taken to combat doping in sport

Urgent measures to be taken to combat doping in sport

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Urgent measures to be taken to combat doping in sport

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Education training youth sport > Sport

Urgent measures to be taken to combat doping in sport

Document or Iniciative

European Parliament Resolution of 14 April 2005 on combating doping in sport [Not published in the Official Journal].

Summary

Concerned by the ever increasing problem of doping in sport (in particular the use of ever more dangerous substances, such as growth hormones or Erythropoietin), the European Parliament would emphasise first of all that the use of chemicals to enhance performance is totally at odds with the values of sport as a social, cultural and education activity.

In order to combat doping more effectively, the European Parliament calls on the Commission to:

  • ensure that the Union’s external borders are effectively policed and combat the trade in illegal substances;
  • implement an effective, joined-up policy in all related fields (public health, prevention, education and pharmaceutical research);
  • support a sustained information campaign in order to establish an effective prevention policy;
  • together with the Member States, step up its collaboration with the World Anti-Doping Agency, the Council of Europe and the World Health Organisation;
  • involve all those concerned with sport in the decision-making process in this area, in order to tackle this problem effectively and promote a clean image of sport;
  • encourage cooperation between the Member States in order to develop common, effective methods for monitoring and certifying the use of chemical substances and compounds in gymnasia and sports centres frequented by young people in particular;
  • propose, in the Seventh Research Framework Programme, further research into different methods of doping detection and control.

Doping: a reality to be tackled

Doping is a real public health problem today. As the 2004 Athens Olympics showed, it has become worryingly prevalent in all areas of sport and at all competitive and amateur levels. Not only does it place athletes in danger, but it falsifies competition results, damages the image of sport, especially for young people, and tarnishes its ethical dimension.

Related Acts

Parliament Resolution of 17 December 1998 on urgent measures to be taken against doping in sport [Official Journal C98 of 09.04.1999]

 

White Paper on sport

White Paper on sport

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about White Paper on sport

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Education training youth sport > Sport

White Paper on sport

Document or Iniciative

White Paper on Sport of 11 July 2007, presented by the European Commission to the Council, the European Parliament, the Committee of the Regions and the European Economic and Social Committee [COM(2007) 391 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Summary

This White Paper is the Commission’s main contribution to the theme of sport and its role in the daily lives of European citizens.

It recognises the impact which sport can have on all European policies.

It also identifies the needs and specific characteristics of the world of sport.

Lastly, it opens up future prospects for sport at European level, while respecting the principle of subsidiarity, the independence of sport organisations and Community law.

Objectives

The main objectives of the White Paper on Sport are to:

  • set strategic guidelines;
  • encourage debate on specific problems;
  • increase the visibility of sport in the EU decision-making process;
  • highlight the needs and specific characteristics of the sector;
  • identify the appropriate level of government for future action.

More specifically, the Commission intends to use this White Paper to:

  • ensure that the sport dimension is fully reflected in all areas of European policy;
  • increase legal clarity as regards the application of the acquis communautaire in the field of sport and thereby help to improve sport governance in Europe.

Thematic structure

Three themes are covered by the White Paper:

  • the “societal role of sport”, i.e. what sport represents as a social phenomenon;
  • the “economic dimension of sport”, i.e. the contribution of sport to growth and the creation of jobs in Europe;
  • the “organisation of sport”, i.e. the role of each stakeholder (public or private, economic or sporting) in the governance of the sports movement.

Action Plan

An Action Plan bearing the name of Pierre de Coubertin, in tribute to the father of the modern Olympic Games, completes this White Paper.

In this Action Plan, the Commission proposes a range of specific actions relating to the societal and economic aspects of sport, such as health, social inclusion, voluntary work, education or external relations.

The Action Plan includes the following proposals:

  • the development of guidelines on physical activity and the establishment of a European network for the promotion of sport as a health-enhancing activity;
  • greater coordination in the fight against doping at European level;
  • the award of a European label to schools which encourage involvement in physical activities;
  • the launch of a study on volunteer work in sport;
  • the improvement of social inclusion and integration through sport using European programmes and resources;
  • the promotion of the exchange of information, experiences and good practices between law-enforcement services and sport organisations for the prevention of racism and violence;
  • the promotion of the use of sport as a tool in European development policy;
  • the creation of statistics to quantify the economic impact of sport;
  • a study on public and private financing of sport;
  • an impact assessment on the activities of players’ agents and an evaluation of the value-added of possible Community intervention in this field;
  • better structuring of dialogue on sport at Community level, in particular through the organisation of an annual forum on sport;
  • intensification of intergovernmental cooperation in the field of sport;
  • promoting the creation of European social dialogue committees in the sport sector, and support for employers and employees.

Monitoring

The Commission will monitor the initiatives presented in this White Paper through a structured dialogue involving all the stakeholders in the world of sport:

  • European sport federations;
  • European umbrella organisations for sport, such as the European Olympic Committees (EOC), the European Paralympic Committee (EPC) and European non-governmental sport organisations;
  • national umbrella organisations for sport and national Olympic and Paralympic Committees;
  • other stakeholders in the field of sport represented at European level, including the social partners;
  • other European and international organisations (bodies of the Council of Europe and the United Nations, UNESCO, WHO, etc.).

Background

Sport, as a social and economic phenomenon, contributes to the achievement of the European Union’s strategic objectives of solidarity and prosperity. It conveys the concepts of peace, tolerance, mutual understanding and education, in line with the European ideal.

Today, sport is confronted with new problems, such as commercial pressure, trafficking in human beings, doping, racism, violence, corruption and money laundering.

The European Council recognised the essential role of sport in its Declaration of December 2000. The European Council of June 2007 set a mandate for the Intergovernmental Conference, according to which a provision in the future Treaty will be devoted to sport.

This White Paper stems from wide-ranging consultations started in 2005 of, in particular, the Olympic Committees, sport federations and the Member States.

 

Community support plan to combat doping in sport

Community support plan to combat doping in sport

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Community support plan to combat doping in sport

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Education training youth sport > Sport

Community support plan to combat doping in sport

Document or Iniciative

Communication from the Commission to the Council, the European Parliament, the Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions: Community support plan to combat doping in sport [COM(99) 643 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Summary

The Commission has opted for a three-layer approach in the war on doping in sport:

  • assemble the experts’ opinions on the ethical, legal and scientific dimensions of doping. To this end the Commission has consulted the European Ethics Group and invited it to deliver an opinion;
  • contribute to preparing the 1999 World Anti-Doping Conference and work together with the Olympic movement to create the World Anti-Doping Agency (this Agency was founded on 10 November 1999);
  • mobilise Community instruments with a view to supplementing the actions already underway in the Member States and to vesting them with a Community dimension, taking account of, inter alia, the growing mobility of European sportspersons and the Community’s powers in the field of doping.

Promoting ethics in sport, reinforcing the health protection of athletes

The Commission has committed itself to taking into account, in its future actions and deliberations, elements of the opinion of the European Group on Ethics (EGE). This group has recalled the ethical principles which must inspire all Community measures:

The rights of everyone, both sportspersons and others, to safety and health;

  • the principle of integrity and transparency, for the sake of which the consistency of sporting competitions must be ensured and the image of sport in general preserved;
  • the special attention which must be paid to the most vulnerable people and, in particular, children, who can be very involved in high-level sport.

On the basis of these ethical principles, the EEG has suggested a number of measures:

  • the establishment of an effective health monitoring system for athletes, in particular a specialised medical, psychological and information service;
  • the adoption of a directive on the protection of young athletes, in particular those who aspire to go professional;
  • the adoption of specific provisions on the protection of athletes as workers exposed to certain occupational hazards;
  • the encouragement of epidemiological research into the health of athletes;
  • the organisation of conferences on the subject of doping and athletes’ health, in collaboration with the sporting movement;
  • raising the awareness of education professionals about the problems of sporting ethics;
  • increased police and judicial cooperation;
  • the incorporation of provisions relating to doping and its prohibition in athletes’ contracts;
  • the adoption of a common declaration equivalent to a code of conduct for sport at the end of a European conference on doping.

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA): a new partnership?

Possible participation in the World Anti-Doping Agency constitutes the second strand of Community action.

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), which is based in Montreal, was founded on 10 November 1999 in Lausanne. Its aim is to promote and coordinate the fight against doping at international level, and it comprises, inter alia, representatives of the Olympics movement, public bodies, intergovernmental organisations and the private sector.

The EU and its Member States played an active part in the Agency’s creation in 1999, as regards both policy and financing.

At the time there was considerable Community interest in having an involvement in the creation of the Agency, since several of the tasks assigned to the Agency relate to fields in which the Community has competence.

This Agency provides the framework for a new partnership between the Olympic movement and public authorities. Right from the outset, the European Union’s position was to ensure respect for the principles of independence and transparency in the Agency’s work. Representatives of the Member States, the Commission and the Council of Europe were unanimous during the preparations for the Agency that these principles must be respected, that the two parties must be represented equally and that major decisions must be taken by consensus.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) had for its part invited the European Community to participate in the creation of the Agency. The IOC hoped that this Agency, established on 10 November 1999, would be fully operational for the Sydney Olympics due to be held in September 2000.

At a meeting held on 2 November 1999, the IOC and the European Union agreed on the draft statutes of the Agency, with the addition of the following comments:

  • It will be necessary to specify in the text the vital importance of the political and moral commitment of all the relevant parties to the Agency’s activities;
  • The Agency should be required to adopt and modify the list of banned substances, taking as its initial point of reference the IOC Medical Commission’s list;
  • The Agency should with be responsible for accrediting the testing laboratories and harmonising testing methods;
  • The Agency should organise and coordinate the out-of-competition testing, in close cooperation with the international federations and the relevant public authorities;
  • Government and sporting organisations should enjoy equal representation in the Foundation Board, which would remain free of any exterior influence, for example illegitimate commercial interests;
  • Decisions of great importance should be taken on the basis of consensus.

On the basis of this agreement with the representatives of the European Union and of the Council of Europe, the IOC legally deposited the statutes of the Agency, with a view to setting up the Foundation Board.

During this transitional period, which ran until 1 January 2002, the Union had two representatives ad personam on the Foundation Board. The Commission participated as an observer.

Although the Council had envisaged a Community contribution to WADA’s operating budget as from 2002, the Commission nevertheless announced in December 2001 that the EU would not participate either in the future functioning or financing of WADA as the legal and political conditions had not been met.

At the moment, the EU as a body merely supports the work of the Agency and might envisage active participation in the future.

It should be noted, however, that the 25 Member States of the EU each participate individually in the financing of the Agency.

Mobilising the Community instruments

The third Community action strand in the war against doping involves mobilising the Community instruments. Two types of action may be considered:

  • Firstly, better coordination of regulatory measures.
  • Secondly, mobilisation of Community programmes which can support positive anti-doping measures at European level.

If the fight against doping in sports is to be sustained and effective, it is essential to ensure genuine coordination and synergy between the actions taken by the various players in their respective spheres of responsibility: the sports community, Member States, international organisations, the EU, the World Anti-Doping Agency.

These actions will focus on the following:

  • intensifying efforts to identify doping substances, detection methods, the consequences of doping for health and doping as a socio-economic phenomenon;
  • mobilising education, vocational training and youth programmes in the service of information and training, awareness-raising and prevention programmes;
  • making full use of police and judicial cooperation programmes;
  • reinforcing drugs information;
  • developing measures in the field of public health policy.

Doping and sport

The nature of doping is changing. Today, doping – barring exceptional cases – is no longer an isolated act on the part of an individual sportsperson, practised on the day of the competition. We are talking about systematic, organised methods at team level that exploit scientific advances for unethical ends. For example, increasing use is being made of substances which make it possible to mask doping products in the event of analysis.

The Commission is paying particular attention to the underlying causes of doping. One major cause of the spread of doping is the over-commercialisation of sport, in particular the recent explosion of television rights associated with large sponsoring contracts. This commercialisation and the economic and financial stakes involved have led to a proliferation of sports competitions and have curtailed athletes’ recovery times, a factor which also shortens the professional’s sporting life. Besides, there are the perverse effects of contracts between certain sports associations and their sponsors, with awards being granted on the basis of results obtained. The athlete’s general environment, from the coach or doctor to the team leader and family circle, may put additional pressure on the athlete.

Young athletes constitute a particular problem, given the increasingly young age at which sports careers are starting.

The war on doping is a very good illustration of how Community action can contribute to reinforcing action at various levels, notably national level, and responding to the public’s expectations, while respecting both the autonomy of the sports organisations and the subsidiarity principle.

Related Acts

European Parliament Resolution of 14 April 2005 on combating doping in sport [Not published in the Official Journal].

The number of cases of doping during the 2004 Athens Olympic Games demonstrated, once again, the reality of doping in sport. Against this background, the European Parliament calls on the European Commission inter alia to implement an effective and integrated policy in all fields relating to the fight against doping, to support a sustained information and awareness-raising campaign and to encourage cooperation between Member States.

European Parliament Resolution of 17 December 1998 on urgent measures to be taken against doping in sport [Official Journal C 98 of 09.04.1999]

Resolution of the Council and of the representatives of the Governments of the Member States, meeting within the Council on a code of conduct against doping in sport [Official Journal C 44 of 19.02.1992]

The Commission established the code at the Council’s request as an instrument serving to inform and educate the public in general, and, more specifically, young people, as well as the circles concerned.

 

Free movement of goods for sporting purposes

Free movement of goods for sporting purposes

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Free movement of goods for sporting purposes

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Education training youth sport > Sport

Free movement of goods for sporting purposes

Since 1993, the single market has provided four freedoms as its cornerstones, one of which is the free movement of goods within the European Union (EU). As an essential element of the single market, the common customs union abolished controls at the Union’s internal borders, thus creating a single trading area where goods may be freely circulated. This principle of free movement of goods is established in Articles 34-35 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU), which prohibit restrictions on imports and exports between EU countries. The movement of horses and other animals being part of and playing a role in sports within the Union continue to be regulated at the EU level.

Free movement of horses

The EU has adopted measures that regulate the movement of and trade in equidae, which also have repercussions for the movement of horses for sporting purposes.

Directive 2009/156/EC defines the animal health conditions for the movement within the EU and importation from non-EU countries of equidae. It requires registered equidae that will be moved between EU countries to be identified by means of an identification document set out in Directive 90/427/EEC on the zootechnical and genealogical conditions governing intra-EU trade in equidae. These identification requirements are implemented by Regulation (EC) No 504/2008/EC. Specific provisions apply to equidae dispatched from EU countries that are affected by the African horse sickness.

Directive 90/428/EEC governs trade in equidae intended for competitions as well as establishes the conditions for their participation in competitions. It relates to all types of competitions and to all equidae, whether registered or not. The competition rules may not discriminate between equidae that are registered in or that originate from the EU country in which the competition is being held and equidae registered in or originating from another EU country. Equal treatment of equidae must be ensured with respect to the:

  • requirements for entering competitions;
  • judging of competitions;
  • prize money or profits that may accrue from competitions.

Nevertheless, EU countries may make exceptions to these rules when they organise:

  • competitions reserved for a particular breed registered in a specific studbook (register), with a view to improving that breed;
  • regional competitions;
  • historic or traditional events.

In addition, the Commission has adopted Decision 93/195/EEC, which lays down the animal health conditions for the re-entry of registered horses for racing, competition and cultural events after temporary export to non-EU countries.

The Commission has also laid down rules for the temporary admission (for a maximum of 89 days) of registered horses in Decision 92/260/EEC. This decision is mainly, but not exclusively, used in the arrival from and return to their home countries outside the EU of sport horses.

Incorporating the specific characteristics of sport and its social functions into the implementation of common policies

Incorporating the specific characteristics of sport and its social functions into the implementation of common policies

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Incorporating the specific characteristics of sport and its social functions into the implementation of common policies

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Education training youth sport > Sport

Incorporating the specific characteristics of sport and its social functions into the implementation of common policies

Document or Iniciative

Declaration of the European Council on the specific characteristics of sport and its social function in Europe, of which account should be taken in implementing common policies

Summary

The role of the Community

Sporting organisations and the Member States have primary responsibility in the conduct of sporting affairs. The Community has only indirect powers in this area. Nevertheless, it is felt that the Community should take account of the social, educational and cultural functions of sport in its action under the various provisions of the Treaty, in order to preserve the social role of sport.

Guiding principle

The declaration lays down principles concerning the various aspects of sport, with a view to preserving the cohesion and ties of solidarity that exist in sport at all levels, fair competition, and the moral and material interests and physical integrity of sportsmen and women, especially minors.

The Community institutions and the Member States are invited to continue to examine their policies on the basis of these principles, if they so wish.

Sport for all

  • Sport is based on fundamental social, educational and cultural values. It makes for integration, involvement in the life of society, tolerance, acceptance of differences and compliance with rules;
  • Sporting activity should be accessible to every man and women, regardless of his or her abilities or interests;
  • Physical activity is extremely important for disabled people and should be encouraged. It is particularly conducive to rehabilitation, reeducation, integration into society and individual development;
  • The Member States encourage voluntary services in sport, with the support, where necessary, of the Community, within the limits of its powers.

Role of sports federations

  • The task of sporting organisations is to organise and promote their particular sport, in line with their objectives, with due regard for national and Community legislation and on the basis of a democratic and transparent method of operation. They enjoy independence and the right to organise themselves;
  • Sporting federations have a key role to play in ensuring the necessary solidarity between the various levels of sporting practice, from recreational to top-level sport. Among other things, they support amateur sports, ensure equal access, train young people and protect health, including taking measures to combat doping;
  • These social functions entail special responsibilities and form the basis for the recognition of their competence to organise competitions;
  • Their method of organisation must ensure cohesion in sport and participatory democracy.

Preservation of sports training policies

Training policies for young sportsmen and sportswomen should be encouraged. Sporting federations, where appropriate in tandem with the public authorities, should take the necessary action to preserve the training capacity of clubs affiliated to them and ensure the quality of such training.

Protection of young sportsmen and sportswomen

  • It is necessary to pay special heed to the vocational training of top young sportsmen and sportswomen in order to ensure that their vocational integration is not jeopardised by their sporting careers, but without disregarding their mental balance, family ties and health, in particular the prevention of doping.
  • Member States and sporting organisations should monitor and investigate commercial transactions targeting minors in sport, including those from third countries, in order to ensure that they comply with labour law and do not endanger the health and welfare of young sportsmen and sportswomen. There is also a need, where appropriate, to consider appropriate measures.

Economic context of sport and solidarity

  • The ownership or economic control by one financial operator of several sporting clubs taking part in the same competition may jeopardise fair competition. Sports federations are encouraged to introduce arrangements for overseeing the management of clubs in order to prevent a situation of this kind from arising.
  • As the sale of television broadcasting rights is one of the greatest sources of income for certain sports, the sharing of part of the corresponding revenue among the appropriate levels may be beneficial in order to preserve the principle of solidarity in sport.

Transfers

As far as the system of transfers is concerned, in particular in football, the European Council strongly supports the dialogue between the sporting movement, the organisations representing professional sportsmen and sportswomen, the Community and the Member States. This dialogue concerns the development of the transfer system, especially in football, in order to take account of, among other things, the principle of freedom of movement for workers. The current system of transfers in professional football is being carefully examined by the Commission in the light of the rules on both competition and freedom of movement.

Background

The declaration was pronounced at the European Council of Nice on 7-9 December 2000 and annexed to the Presidency conclusions. It takes note of the report on sport submitted by the European Commission to the European Council in Helsinki in December 1999 with a view to safeguarding current sports structures and maintaining the social function of sport in the European Union.

Related Acts

Decision No 291/2003/EC of the European Parliament and the Council of 6 February 2003 establishing the European Year of Education through Sport 2004.

 

Building on the achievements of the European Year of Education through Sport 2004

Building on the achievements of the European Year of Education through Sport 2004

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Building on the achievements of the European Year of Education through Sport 2004

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Education training youth sport > Sport

Building on the achievements of the European Year of Education through Sport 2004

Document or Iniciative

Commission Communication of 22 December 2005: “EU action in the field of Education through Sport: building on EYES 2004 achievements” [COM(2005)680 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Summary

EYES 2004 was launched to increase awareness on the potential of sport as a tool for education and social inclusion. The wider aim of this initiative was to promote education through sport in formal and non-formal education.

Objectives and outputs

Specific objectives included promoting voluntary activities, pupil mobility and exchanges through sport activities, social inclusion of disadvantaged groups and the creation of a better balance between intellectual and physical activity in school life. The main results are:

  • involvement of the 25 Member States and the 3 EFTA/EEA countries: Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway;
  • 167 projects co-financed, out of 1643 applications;
  • 66 projects in the field of formal education;
  • 60 projects using the values of sport in activities for young people;
  • 30 ceremonies (opening and closing of EYES);
  • representation at 12 international events such as Euro 2004 and the Olympic and Paralympic Games;
  • 2 Eurobarometer surveys.

Cooperation with the participating countries was channelled through the Advisory Committee in which most of them were represented by delegates from Education and Sport departments. This has become the first stable European network of public authorities responsible for education and sport.

During EYES 2004, the Commission cooperated with the Council of Europe, notably by co-financing a project in the field of education on democratic citizenship in Europe. As part of the preparations for the International Year for Sport and Physical Education in 2005, a fruitful dialogue was established with UNESCO with a view to continuing activities in 2005.

Impact assessment

The initiative has created and built up lasting networks and often new partnerships between education and sport. EYES 2004 provided numerous examples of good practices which go beyond its networking achievements.

Its main impacts have been:

  • a significant contribution to disseminating the educational values of sport;
  • the fostering and increasing recognition of activities in the field of education through sport;
  • a contribution to changing the attitudes of the European public in this area.

However, its effects seem to have been more limited in other ways, for example in promoting sport as a vehicle for social inclusion of disadvantaged groups, encouraging a better balance between intellectual and physical activity in school life, and highlighting the positive contribution made by voluntary work and student mobility.

Expectations in formal education

Formal education could take better advantage of the values conveyed through sport to develop knowledge, motivation, skills, readiness for personal effort and social abilities. This makes sport essential in formal education for acquiring and developing key skills needed by everyone for personal fulfilment, social inclusion and employability.

On the other hand, formal education has a crucial role to play in encouraging habits leading to regular physical activity and in countering unhealthy lifestyle habits.

The expectations surrounding EYES 2004 led to the following ideas:

  • using national expertise to develop a better understanding and increased knowledge at EU level of the place of sport and physical activity in school life;
  • raising awareness of the mutual benefits for educational institutions and sport organisations;
  • improving recognition of the qualifications of those who teach sport-related professions (e.g. trainers and sports managers);
  • taking advantage of the potential of sport and physical activity in formal education to reverse current trends towards a sedentary and passive lifestyle;
  • making full use of the results of EYES 2004 by capitalising on the good practices developed and taking better advantage of the possibilities for financing projects and initiatives based on sporting activities.

Expectations in non-formal learning

EYES has proven that there was a demand in European civil society for sport to be used in non-formal learning and as a tool for promoting social integration, developing intercultural dialogue and combating discrimination, particularly racism and xenophobia.

Taking part in sport is educational not only in its own right but also by virtue of active participation in sport clubs and organisations, which helps to reinforce civil society through teaching practical democratic values.

Follow-up by the European Commission

The Commission, within the limits of its competence and in full respect of the principle of subsidiarity and the autonomy of educational institutions and sport organisations, will ensure a follow-up to EYES 2004, in particular along the following lines:

  • carrying out new studies, organising further expert meetings and launching new surveys;
  • continuing to organise meetings with the public authorities responsible for education and sport and expanding them to stakeholders in both areas;
  • intensifying dialogue and cooperation with the Sport Movement on the educational and social functions of the sport (e.g. volunteering, participation in sport notably for women, fight against racism and xenophobia, education and protection of young athletes, etc.);
  • taking advantage of the possibilities to finance projects and initiatives on sporting activities in the framework of EU actions (e.g. future European Years, the new EU programme on “Integrated Life Long Learning”, “Youth in Action” and “Citizens for Europe”);
  • improving recognition of the qualifications in sport-related professions and facilitating mobility;
  • raising awareness of the importance of physical activity in reversing the trend towards obesity.

Background

In Declaration 29 attached to the Amsterdam Treaty, the Nice European Council recognised that sport forges people’s identity. In the Nice declaration, the European Council underlined that, “even though [it does not have] any direct powers in this area, the Community must, in its action under the various Treaty provisions, take account of the social, educational and cultural functions inherent in sport.”

The Council, in its Resolution of 17 December 1999 on the non-formal education dimension of sporting activities in the European Community YOUTH programme, called upon the Commission, in cooperation with the Member States, to devise a coherent approach in order to exploit the educational potential of sport, considering that sporting activities can have a pedagogical value which contributes to strengthening civil society.

This Communication is the response to the request from the European Parliament and the Council for the Commission to report on the measures taken during the European Year of Education through Sport 2004 (EYES 2004).

Related Acts

of the European Parliament and of the Council of 6 February 2003 establishing the European Year of Education through Sport 2004 [Official Journal L 43 of 18.02.2003].

European dimension in sport

European dimension in sport

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about European dimension in sport

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Education training youth sport > Sport

European dimension in sport

Document or Iniciative

Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions of 18 January 2011 – Developing the European Dimension in Sport [COM(2011) 12 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Summary

Building on the achievements of the White Paper on sport, this communication presents issues under the same three broad thematic areas that are to be addressed at the European Union (EU) level. Actions at this level aim at providing added value by supporting and complementing EU countries’ actions in the field of sport.

The societal role of sport

Sport can make a positive contribution to European growth, employability of citizens and social cohesion, while limiting health expenditure. However, sport continues to face threats related to doping, violence and intolerance, against which action must be taken to protect athletes and citizens.

The use of doping substances poses serious public health hazards, thus necessitating the stepping up of the fight against doping. Stakeholders have called for the EU to join the Council of Europe Anti-Doping Convention, to which end the Commission will propose a draft mandate for negotiating the EU’s accession. It is also essential to reinforce the measures preventing organised networks’ trade in doping substances. The Commission will examine ways to reinforce such measures, including through the introduction of criminal law provisions. The Commission already supports several organisations that play an important role in the fight against doping, such as the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA). It will continue supporting transnational anti-doping networks.

The quality of sports programmes in educational institutions is not satisfactory in several EU countries. The quality of sport training centres and their staff should be high enough to safeguard athletes’ moral, educational and professional interests. To support education, training and qualifications in sport, the Commission and EU countries will draw up European guidelines on “dual careers” to ensure that quality education is provided alongside sport training. They will also support the referencing of sport-related qualifications to the European Qualification Framework (EQF) and promote the recognition and validation of non-formal and informal learning gained through sport-related activities.

A European approach is needed to prevent and fight against violence and intolerance, which continue to pose problems to European sport. The Commission and EU countries will therefore develop and implement security arrangements and safety requirements covering a wide range of sport disciplines (currently only international football events are covered). Furthermore, the Commission will support the fight against intolerance in sport and encourage EU countries to fully and effectively transpose the Framework Decision 2008/913/JHA on combating racism and xenophobia.

Sport is fundamental for improving physical activity, which is an essential health determinant in today’s society. To enhance health through sport, the Commission and EU countries are further working on national guidelines encouraging the incorporation of physical activity into citizens’ daily lives, based on the 2008 EU Physical Activity Guidelines. There are great differences between EU countries regarding the concept of health-enhancing physical activity (HEPA). To overcome these differences, the Commission will support transnational projects and networks in this area.

Social inclusion can be improved in and through sport. To this end, the Commission and EU countries will draw up accessibility standards for sport through the European Disability Strategy. They will also further promote the participation of persons with disabilities in sporting activities. In addition, the Commission will support transnational projects that promote women’s access to sport and disadvantaged groups’ social integration through sport.

The economic dimension of sport

Sport is an ever growing sector of the economy that contributes to growth and jobs. However, there is a need for comparable data to form the basis of evidence-based policy-making and for sustaining the financing of sport, in particular its non-profit structures.

Evidence-based policy-making is essential for implementing EU sport provisions. The Commission and EU countries will produce satellite accounts for sport to measure its economic importance. The Commission will also provide support to a network of universities to promote innovative and evidence-based sport policies, as well as study the possibility of setting up an EU sport monitoring function.

The sustainable financing of sport must be ensured. Intellectual property rights are an important source of revenue in the professional sports field; consequently, the Commission will take those arising in the coverage of sporting events into consideration in the implementation of the Digital Agenda initiative. It will also study the funding of grassroots sport, which will inform future action in this field. Furthermore, together with EU countries, the Commission will examine how the financial solidarity mechanisms in the sports sector may be strengthened.

Thus far, there have only been a few decisions on the application of EU state aid rules to sport. As a result, stakeholders are continually requesting for additional clarifications on the financing of infrastructure and sport organisations. Hence, the Commission will monitor the application of state aid law in the area of sport and, if the number of state aid cases increases, it will consider providing guidance.

Sport is a valuable tool for regional development and employability. To take advantage of this value, the Commission and EU countries will make full use of the European Regional Development Fund and the European Social Fund to support sustainable sport structures.

The organisation of sport

The autonomy and self-regulation of sport organisations is underpinned by good governance in the sector. To promote good governance in sport at the European level, the Commission and EU countries will endorse common standards through the exchange of good practice and by providing targeted support to specific initiatives.

In order to support the correct application of the concept of the specific nature of sport, the Commission will provide theme-by-theme guidance on the relationship between EU law and sporting rules. It will also provide guidance on EU rules relating to the free movement and nationality of sportspeople, with a view to the organisation of non-discriminatory competitions in individual sports on a national basis.

In addition, the Commission will provide guidance on transfer rules, as player transfers often raise questions about their legality and the financing involved. It will assess both the economic and legal aspects relating to such transfers. The activities of sport agents also raise questions of ethical nature; consequently, the Commission will organise a conference to examine ways in which agents’ activities may be improved.

Within the professional football sector, a European social dialogue committee was already launched in 2008. Several organisations have called for the creation of European social dialogue for the whole sport sector, which the Commission is backing. To facilitate this process, the Commission will propose a test phase for the relevant social partners.

Work Plan for Sport 2011-2014

Work Plan for Sport 2011-2014

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Work Plan for Sport 2011-2014

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Education training youth sport > Sport

Work Plan for Sport 2011-2014

Document or Iniciative

Resolution of the Council and of the Representatives of the Governments of the Member States, meeting within the Council, on a European Union Work Plan for Sport for 2011-2014 [OJ C 162 of 1.6.2011].

Summary

The Treaty of Lisbon made sport a European Union (EU) area of competency, in which it can support, coordinate and complement the actions of its Member States. By promoting sustainable, smart and inclusive growth, and job creation, sport also contributes to the objectives of the Europe 2020 Strategy. Furthermore, it has a positive effect on social inclusion, education, training, public health and active ageing.

In order to develop the European dimension in sport, the Council approves a 3-year work plan detailing the actions to be implemented by Member States and the Commission.

Three priority themes are identified and accompanied by actions for the period 2011-2014:

  • The integrity of sport, in particular the fight against doping and match-fixing. The actions defined to this end are:
    • prepare draft EU comments to the revision of the World Anti-Doping Agency’s world anti-doping code;
    • develop a European dimension of the integrity of sport with the focus on the fight against match-fixing;
    • develop principles of transparency concerning good governance and organisation of sport;
    • address the issues identified related to access to and to supervision of the profession of sport agents and to transfers in team sports (in particular the issue of the transfer of young players).
  • Social values of sport, in particular health, social inclusion, education and volunteering. The following actions must be carried out:

    • prepare a proposal for European guidelines on ‘dual careers’ aimed at ensuring that young athletes receive quality education alongside their sports training;
    • follow up on the inclusion of sport-related certificates in national qualifications frameworks with reference to the European Qualifications Framework;
    • explore ways to promote health enhancing physical activity and participation in grassroots sport.
  • Economic aspects of sport, in particular sustainable financing of sports and evidence-based policy making. Two actions are defined in this respect:

    • promote data collection to measure the economic benefits of the EU sport sector;
    • strengthen financial solidarity mechanisms between professional sport and grassroots sport.

Implementation

Implementation of the Work Plan will be supported by expert groups created by the Commission and the EU countries in the following areas: anti-doping; good governance in sport; education and training in sport; sport, health and participation; sport statistics and sustainable financing of sport.

The Commission will collaborate with the sports movement and competent organisations at national, European and international levels. It will submit a report by the end of 2013 evaluating the implementation of the Work Plan.

Related Acts

Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions of 18 January 2011 – Developing the European Dimension in Sport [COM(2011) 12 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

White Paper on sport of 11 July 2007, presented by the European Commission to the Council, the European Parliament, the Committee of the Regions and the European Economic and Social Committee [COM(2007) 391 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Sport

Sport

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Sport

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Education training youth sport > Sport

Sport

Whether practised at professional or amateur level, on a regular or occasional basis, sport has become one of the most widespread human activities. Beyond the pure health aspects, sport contributes to social integration, is part of the non-formal education process, encourages intercultural exchanges and creates employment within the European Union (EU). Sports policy remains essentially an intergovernmental matter. Nevertheless, European institutions have an important role to play in terms of consultation and promotion, be it in relation to sport in general, the role of sport in terms of the economy and society, or its part in combating racism, violence and the use of drugs.

GENERAL FRAMEWORK

  • Work Plan for Sport 2011-2014
  • European dimension in sport
  • White Paper on sport
  • Building on the achievements of the European Year of Education through Sport 2004
  • European Year of Education through Sport 2004
  • Incorporating the specific characteristics of sport and its social functions into the implementation of common policies

INTERNAL MARKET FOR SPORT

  • Free movement of sportspeople
  • Free movement of goods for sporting purposes
  • Firearms

FIGHT AGAINST DRUG USE

  • Urgent measures to be taken to combat doping in sport
  • Community support plan to combat doping in sport

FIGHT AGAINST HOOLIGANISM

  • Security in connection with football matches with an international dimension
  • Prevention and control of hooliganism

Prevention and control of hooliganism

Prevention and control of hooliganism

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Prevention and control of hooliganism

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Education training youth sport > Sport

Prevention and control of hooliganism

Document or Iniciative

Council Recommendation of 22 April 1996 on guidelines for preventing and restraining disorder connected with football matches [Official Journal C 131 of 3.5.1996].

Council Resolution of 9 June 1997 on preventing and restraining football hooliganism through the exchange of experience, exclusion from stadiums and media policy [Official Journal C 193 of 24.6.1997].

Council Resolution of 21 June 1999 concerning a handbook for international police cooperation and measures to prevent and control violence and disturbances in connection with international football matches [Official Journal C 196 of 13.7.1999].

Council Resolution of 6 December 2001 concerning a handbook with recommendations for international police cooperation and measures to prevent and control violence and disturbances in connection with football matches with an international dimension [Official Journal C 22 of 24.1.2002].

Summary

EU action to combat hooliganism is based mainly on the 1985 Council of Europe Convention on Spectator Violence and Misbehaviour at Sports Events and in Particular at Football Matches and on the Joint Action with regard to cooperation on law and order and security. However, a number of other instruments have been adopted by the Council since the Treaty of Maastricht.

Prevention and control of hooliganism: Community acts

In 1996 the Council adopted a Recommendation that:

Member States should use a common format for police intelligence reports about known or suspected groups of troublemakers. These should be exchanged via the network of football hooliganism correspondents set up in 1994;

  • information should be exchanged about techniques for preventing disorder, and joint training courses organised for police officers from the different Member States;
  • provision should be made for requesting reinforcements from the police forces of other Member States for particular football matches;
  • there should be close cooperation between police officers and stewards in those Member States where this role exists, so as to ensure the best possible division of responsibilities.

In 1997 the Council passed a Resolution calling for:

  • stadium exclusions imposed under domestic law to apply throughout the EU;
  • an annual report to be produced on hooliganism;
  • more care to be taken over media strategy;
  • an annual meeting of experts to be arranged for the exchange of relevant experience.

In 1999 the Council produced a handbook aimed at the police forces of the Member States. This contained practical examples of working methods for developing police cooperation to prevent and control violence and disturbances at international football matches. It includes provisions on:

  • the content and scope of police cooperation (preparations by police forces, organising cooperation between them before the event, information management);
  • relations between the police and the media;
  • cooperation between police forces and stewards;
  • admission policy and ticketing policy.

In the light of experience in recent years (such as the European Championships – Euro 2000) and developments in international police cooperation in this field, the Council Resolution of 6 December 2001 calls for the Member States to step up cooperation.

A handbook aimed at police forces is annexed to this resolution (which replaces the Council resolution of 29 June 1999). The new version of the handbook will include provisions on:

  • the exchange and management of information by the police;
  • cooperation between the police forces in the organising country and the participating countries;
  • cooperation between the police and the organisers of a football match.

The Council does not rule out the possibility that forms of police cooperation established for football matches might be extended to other sporting events.