2011/2087(INI)

European dimension in sport

Procedure completed

2011/2087(INI) European dimension in sport
RoleCommitteeRapporteurShadows
Lead CULT FISAS AYXELA Santiago (EPP) IVAN Cătălin Sorin (S&D), AYLWARD Liam (ALDE), JUNQUERAS VIES Oriol (Verts/ALE), MCCLARKIN Emma (ECR), VERGIAT Marie-Christine (GUE/NGL)
Opinion ECON BALZ Burkhard (EPP)
Opinion EMPL
Opinion ENVI AUCONIE Sophie (EPP)
Opinion FEMM SENYSZYN Joanna (S&D)
Opinion IMCO KORHOLA Eija-Riitta (EPP)
Opinion JURI MANDERS Toine (ALDE)
Opinion LIBE BOZKURT Emine (S&D)
Opinion REGI
Lead committee dossier: CULT/7/05968
Legal Basis RoP 048
Subjects
Links

Activites

  • 2012/02/02 Text adopted by Parliament, single reading
  • 2012/02/01 Debate in Parliament
  • 2011/11/21 Committee report tabled for plenary, single reading
    • A7-0385/2011 summary
  • 2011/11/21 Committee report tabled for plenary, single reading
    • A7-0385/2011 summary
  • 2011/11/10 Vote in committee, 1st reading/single reading
  • 2011/09/06 Deadline Amendments
  • 2011/06/22 Committee draft report
  • #3090
  • 2011/05/20 Council Meeting
  • 2011/05/12 Committee referral announced in Parliament, 1st reading/single reading
  • 2011/05/05 EP officialisation
  • 2011/01/18 Non-legislative basic document published
    • COM(2011)0012 summary
  • 2011/01/18 Date
  • 2011/01/18 Non-legislative basic document
    • COM(2011)0012 summary
    • DG Education and Culture, VASSILIOU Androulla

Documents

AmendmentsDossier
522 2011/2087(INI) European dimension in sport
2011/05/09 LIBE 17 amendments...
source: PE-472.045
2011/06/09 ECON 25 amendments...
source: PE-472.055
2011/07/18 ENVI 50 amendments...
source: PE-469.809
2011/08/31 FEMM 41 amendments...
source: PE-470.067
2011/09/09 CULT 339 amendments...
source: PE-470.057
2011/09/14 IMCO 50 amendments...
source: PE-472.031

History

(these mark the time of scraping, not the official date of the change)

2012-02-09
activities added
  • date
    2011-01-18
    docs
    • url
      http://eur-lex.europa.eu/smartapi/cgi/sga_doc?smartapi!celexplus!prod!DocNumber&lg=EN&type_doc=COMfinal&an_doc=2011&nu_doc=0012
      text
      • PURPOSE: to develop the European dimension in sport.

        BACKGROUND: following the publication of the White Paper on Sport (2007), EU-level cooperation and dialogue on sport have been greatly enhanced. The White Paper includes a description of the specificity of sport and the application of EU law in areas such as the Internal Market and competition to the sport sector. Through the implementation of the White Paper on Sport, the Commission has gathered useful evidence regarding themes to be addressed in the future.

        In a number of areas, the White Paper remains an appropriate basis for EU-level activities in the field of sport. These areas include, for example, the promotion of voluntary activity in sport, the protection of minors, and environmental protection. The White Paper has also created a structured dialogue with sport stakeholders.

        However, following the adoption of the Lisbon Treaty, a new and specific competence gives the EU a supporting, coordinating and supplementing competence for sport which calls for action to develop the European dimension in sport.

        This is the reason why the Commission is presenting this communication which retains the same presentation as that of the White Paper: i) the societal role of sport, ii) the economic dimension of sport and iii) the organisation of sport)

        CONTENT: while preparing this Communication, the Commission consulted with a wide range of stakeholders. Consultations with the Member States revealed a high level of consensus that the following topics should be priorities in the EU agenda for sport: health-enhancing physical activity; the fight against doping; education and training; voluntary activity and non-profit sport organisations; social inclusion in and through sport, including sport for people with disabilities and gender equality in sport; sustainable financing of grassroots sport; and good governance.

        As regards the area of sport, the communication indicates that EU action aims at supporting Member States' actions and complementing them where appropriate in those sectors where the EU can bring added value. This is particularly the case in regard to combating racism and dealing with the challenges of doping, fraud and match-fixing. EU action also contributes to the overall goals of the Europe 2020 Strategy by improving employability and mobility, notably through actions promoting social inclusion in and through sport, education and training.

        In all of the areas elaborated in this Communication, EU action can serve to provide a platform for exchange and dialogue among sport stakeholders, spreading good practice and promoting the development of European networks in the field of sport. In parallel, EU action contributes to the dissemination of knowledge about EU law in the sport sector, but also support for projects and networks to encourage sport (notably in the context of the preparatory actions).

        As regards the main themes covered by the communication and in response to the contributions received from the stakeholders, EU action will take place at three levels:

        1) The societal role of sport: several actions will be supported:

        with regard to the fight against doping, the Commission intends to:

        • propose a draft mandate for negotiations on EU accession to the Anti- Doping Convention of the Council of Europe;
        • examine the most appropriate way to reinforce measures against trade in doping substances by organised networks, including if possible through criminal law;
        • support transnational anti-doping networks, including networks focusing on preventive measures targeting amateur sport, sport for all and fitness;

        with regard to education, training and qualifications in sport:

        • support innovative initiatives under the Lifelong Learning Programme relating to physical activity at school;
        • develop with the Member States European guidelines on combined sports training and general education ("dual careers") and support the inclusion of sport-related qualifications when implementing the European Qualifications Framework;

        with regard to the prevention of and fight against violence and intolerance:

        • develop and implement with the Member States security arrangements and safety requirements for international sport events, including pan-European training and peer review projects for police officers regarding spectator violence;
        • support activities aimed at fighting against racism, xenophobia, homophobia and related intolerance in sport;

        with regard to enhancing health through sport:

        • with the Member States, continue progress toward the establishment of national guidelines, including a review and coordination process, and consider proposing a Council Recommendation in this field;
        • support transnational projects and networks in the area of health-enhancing physical activity;

        with regard to social inclusion in and through sport:

        • develop and disseminate standards for accessibility of sport, leisure and recreation organisations, activities, events and venues;
        • promote the participation of people with disabilities in European sporting events;
        • support transnational projects promoting women's access to leadership positions in sport and access to sport for women in a disadvantaged position
        • support transnational projects promoting social integration of vulnerable and disadvantaged groups through sport and related exchange of good practice.

        2) The economic dimension of sport: recalling how much the sports sector contributes to growth and employment (it generates 2% of global GDP), the Commission envisages the following actions:

        Evidence-based policy-making in the field of sport:

        • support a network of universities to promote innovative and evidence-based sport policies;
        • study the feasibility of establishing a sport monitoring function in the EU (analyse main trends);

        Sustainable financing of sport:

        • ensure that intellectual property rights that might arise in the coverage of sport events are taken into account in the implementation of the Digital Agenda initiative;
        • launch a study to analyse sport organisers' rights and image rights in sport from the perspective of the EU legal framework;
        • in cooperation with the sport movement, explore ways to strengthen financial solidarity mechanisms within sports while fully respecting EU competition rules;
        • consider best practice among existing funding mechanisms for transparent and sustainable financing of sport;

        Application of EU State aid rules to sport:

        • monitor the application of State aid law in the field of sport and consider guidance if the number of sport-related State aid cases increases;

        Regional development and employability:

        • fully exploit the possibilities of the European Regional Development Fund to support sport infrastructure and sustainable activities in sport and outdoors as a tool for regional and rural development, and of the European Social Fund to strengthen the skills and employability of workers in the sport sector.

        3) The organisation of sport: recalling that good governance in sport is a condition for the autonomy and self-regulation of sport organisations, the Commission envisages the following actions:

        • with the Member States, promote standards of sport governance through exchange of good practice and targeted support to specific initiatives;
        • provide assistance and guidance, on a theme-per-theme basis, relating to the application of the concept of the specific nature of sport;
        • issue guidance on how to reconcile the Treaty provisions on nationality with the organisation of competitions in individual sports on a national basis;
        • assess the consequences of rules on home-grown players in team sports in 2012;

        in the area of transfer rules and the activities of sports agents:

        • launch a study on the economic and legal aspects of transfers of players and their impact on sport competitions. In this context, provide guidance on transfers of players in team sports;
        • organise a conference to further explore possible ways for EU institutions and representatives of the sport movement (federations, leagues, clubs, players and agents) to improve the situation with regard to the activities of sports agents;

        in the area of European social dialogue in the sport sector:

        • support social partners and sport organisations to create an EU-level social dialogue for the whole sport and leisure sector.

        Follow-up: the Commission will continue to provide support for informal working groups in the field of sport which the Member States wish to continue or establish. The European Parliament and the Council are invited to support the proposals made in this Communication and to indicate their priorities for future activities.

      title
      COM(2011)0012
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      Non-legislative basic document published
      celexid
      CELEX:52011DC0012:EN
    body
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    Non-legislative basic document published
  • body
    EP
    date
    2011-01-18
    type
    Date
  • date
    2011-01-18
    docs
    • url
      http://eur-lex.europa.eu/smartapi/cgi/sga_doc?smartapi!celexplus!prod!DocNumber&lg=EN&type_doc=COMfinal&an_doc=2011&nu_doc=0012
      text
      • PURPOSE: to develop the European dimension in sport.

        BACKGROUND: following the publication of the White Paper on Sport (2007), EU-level cooperation and dialogue on sport have been greatly enhanced. The White Paper includes a description of the specificity of sport and the application of EU law in areas such as the Internal Market and competition to the sport sector. Through the implementation of the White Paper on Sport, the Commission has gathered useful evidence regarding themes to be addressed in the future.

        In a number of areas, the White Paper remains an appropriate basis for EU-level activities in the field of sport. These areas include, for example, the promotion of voluntary activity in sport, the protection of minors, and environmental protection. The White Paper has also created a structured dialogue with sport stakeholders.

        However, following the adoption of the Lisbon Treaty, a new and specific competence gives the EU a supporting, coordinating and supplementing competence for sport which calls for action to develop the European dimension in sport.

        This is the reason why the Commission is presenting this communication which retains the same presentation as that of the White Paper: i) the societal role of sport, ii) the economic dimension of sport and iii) the organisation of sport)

        CONTENT: while preparing this Communication, the Commission consulted with a wide range of stakeholders. Consultations with the Member States revealed a high level of consensus that the following topics should be priorities in the EU agenda for sport: health-enhancing physical activity; the fight against doping; education and training; voluntary activity and non-profit sport organisations; social inclusion in and through sport, including sport for people with disabilities and gender equality in sport; sustainable financing of grassroots sport; and good governance.

        As regards the area of sport, the communication indicates that EU action aims at supporting Member States' actions and complementing them where appropriate in those sectors where the EU can bring added value. This is particularly the case in regard to combating racism and dealing with the challenges of doping, fraud and match-fixing. EU action also contributes to the overall goals of the Europe 2020 Strategy by improving employability and mobility, notably through actions promoting social inclusion in and through sport, education and training.

        In all of the areas elaborated in this Communication, EU action can serve to provide a platform for exchange and dialogue among sport stakeholders, spreading good practice and promoting the development of European networks in the field of sport. In parallel, EU action contributes to the dissemination of knowledge about EU law in the sport sector, but also support for projects and networks to encourage sport (notably in the context of the preparatory actions).

        As regards the main themes covered by the communication and in response to the contributions received from the stakeholders, EU action will take place at three levels:

        1) The societal role of sport: several actions will be supported:

        with regard to the fight against doping, the Commission intends to:

        • propose a draft mandate for negotiations on EU accession to the Anti- Doping Convention of the Council of Europe;
        • examine the most appropriate way to reinforce measures against trade in doping substances by organised networks, including if possible through criminal law;
        • support transnational anti-doping networks, including networks focusing on preventive measures targeting amateur sport, sport for all and fitness;

        with regard to education, training and qualifications in sport:

        • support innovative initiatives under the Lifelong Learning Programme relating to physical activity at school;
        • develop with the Member States European guidelines on combined sports training and general education ("dual careers") and support the inclusion of sport-related qualifications when implementing the European Qualifications Framework;

        with regard to the prevention of and fight against violence and intolerance:

        • develop and implement with the Member States security arrangements and safety requirements for international sport events, including pan-European training and peer review projects for police officers regarding spectator violence;
        • support activities aimed at fighting against racism, xenophobia, homophobia and related intolerance in sport;

        with regard to enhancing health through sport:

        • with the Member States, continue progress toward the establishment of national guidelines, including a review and coordination process, and consider proposing a Council Recommendation in this field;
        • support transnational projects and networks in the area of health-enhancing physical activity;

        with regard to social inclusion in and through sport:

        • develop and disseminate standards for accessibility of sport, leisure and recreation organisations, activities, events and venues;
        • promote the participation of people with disabilities in European sporting events;
        • support transnational projects promoting women's access to leadership positions in sport and access to sport for women in a disadvantaged position
        • support transnational projects promoting social integration of vulnerable and disadvantaged groups through sport and related exchange of good practice.

        2) The economic dimension of sport: recalling how much the sports sector contributes to growth and employment (it generates 2% of global GDP), the Commission envisages the following actions:

        Evidence-based policy-making in the field of sport:

        • support a network of universities to promote innovative and evidence-based sport policies;
        • study the feasibility of establishing a sport monitoring function in the EU (analyse main trends);

        Sustainable financing of sport:

        • ensure that intellectual property rights that might arise in the coverage of sport events are taken into account in the implementation of the Digital Agenda initiative;
        • launch a study to analyse sport organisers' rights and image rights in sport from the perspective of the EU legal framework;
        • in cooperation with the sport movement, explore ways to strengthen financial solidarity mechanisms within sports while fully respecting EU competition rules;
        • consider best practice among existing funding mechanisms for transparent and sustainable financing of sport;

        Application of EU State aid rules to sport:

        • monitor the application of State aid law in the field of sport and consider guidance if the number of sport-related State aid cases increases;

        Regional development and employability:

        • fully exploit the possibilities of the European Regional Development Fund to support sport infrastructure and sustainable activities in sport and outdoors as a tool for regional and rural development, and of the European Social Fund to strengthen the skills and employability of workers in the sport sector.

        3) The organisation of sport: recalling that good governance in sport is a condition for the autonomy and self-regulation of sport organisations, the Commission envisages the following actions:

        • with the Member States, promote standards of sport governance through exchange of good practice and targeted support to specific initiatives;
        • provide assistance and guidance, on a theme-per-theme basis, relating to the application of the concept of the specific nature of sport;
        • issue guidance on how to reconcile the Treaty provisions on nationality with the organisation of competitions in individual sports on a national basis;
        • assess the consequences of rules on home-grown players in team sports in 2012;

        in the area of transfer rules and the activities of sports agents:

        • launch a study on the economic and legal aspects of transfers of players and their impact on sport competitions. In this context, provide guidance on transfers of players in team sports;
        • organise a conference to further explore possible ways for EU institutions and representatives of the sport movement (federations, leagues, clubs, players and agents) to improve the situation with regard to the activities of sports agents;

        in the area of European social dialogue in the sport sector:

        • support social partners and sport organisations to create an EU-level social dialogue for the whole sport and leisure sector.

        Follow-up: the Commission will continue to provide support for informal working groups in the field of sport which the Member States wish to continue or establish. The European Parliament and the Council are invited to support the proposals made in this Communication and to indicate their priorities for future activities.

      title
      COM(2011)0012
      type
      Non-legislative basic document
      celexid
      CELEX:52011DC0012:EN
    body
    EC
    commission
    • DG
      Education and Culture
      Commissioner
      VASSILIOU Androulla
    type
    Non-legislative basic document
  • body
    EP
    date
    2011-05-05
    type
    EP officialisation
  • date
    2011-05-12
    body
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    Committee referral announced in Parliament, 1st reading/single reading
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  • body
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    meeting_id
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    text
    • The Council adopted a resolution on a European Union Work Plan for Sport (2011-2014). Ministers warmly welcomed this first EU Work Plan in a new area of competence introduced by the Lisbon Treaty, which gives the EU a new supporting, coordinating and supplementing competence for sport, while respecting both the autonomy of national sport governing structures and the competences of the member states.

      The Work Plan acknowledges the important contribution of sport to the overall goals of the Europe 2020 strategy, given the sector's strong potential to contribute to smart, sustainable and inclusive growth and new jobs and considering its positive effects on social inclusion, education and training, as well as on public health and active ageing. It sets out the following priority areas:

      • integrity, in particular the fight against doping and match-fixing and the promotion of good governance;
      • social values, in particular health, social inclusion, education and volunteering;
      • economic aspects, in particular sustainable financing and evidence-based policy making.

      In order to address these priorities, Member States and the Commission agreed to establish several expert groups for the next three years. In addition to these groups, other working methods may include Presidency conferences, informal meetings of sports directors and ministers, Commission studies and conferences.

      In the first half of 2014, the Council will evaluate the implementation of the Work Plan, on the basis of a report prepared by the Commission by the end of 2013.

    council
    Education, Youth, Culture and Sport
    date
    2011-05-20
    type
    Council Meeting
  • date
    2011-06-22
    docs
    • url
      http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?type=COMPARL&mode=XML&language=EN&reference=PE466.981
      type
      Committee draft report
      title
      PE466.981
    body
    EP
    type
    Committee draft report
  • body
    EP
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    Deadline Amendments
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    2011-11-21
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      text
      • The Committee on culture and education adopted the own-initiative report by Santiago FISAS AYXELA (EPP, ES) on the European dimension in sport.

        Members recall that billions of people throughout the world play sports invented, codified and disseminated in Europe and sport plays an important part in the European economy, as it directly or indirectly employs 15 million people, and represents an annual added value of approximately EUR 407 billion, or 3.65% of Europe’s GDP. They also recall that 35 million amateurs assist the development of mass-participation sport and the dissemination of sporting ideals.

        The social role of sport: Members urge the Commission to propose a dedicated and ambitious budget for sports policy under the future MFF given the public health, social, cultural and economic benefits of sport.

        The Commission is also asked to:

        ·        make use of its coordinating function in sport to gather examples of best practice from the Member States and make these available to all interested parties throughout Europe in a central database;

        ·        encourage the practice of sport among senior citizens as it helps to promote social interaction and high rates of good health.

        For their part, Member States are asked to:

        ·        ensure that sport becomes a subject in the curriculum of schools of all kinds, and underlines the importance of encouraging participation in sports at all levels of education, from early years onwards;

        ·        promote and support the cooperation of schools and sports clubs; 

        ·        increase their grants to organisations that seek to integrate through sport people at risk of social exclusion or that promote sport for physically or mentally disabled people;

        ·        prevent and fight against any form of discrimination or racism.

        Members underline the importance of making sport available to all citizens in many different settings, whether at school, at work, as a recreational activity or through clubs and associations.

        They stress the great socially-integrating power of sport in many areas, including civic commitment and the conception of democracy, the promotion of good health, urban development, and education. They also stress the role of sport   as a means of promoting peace, economic growth, intercultural dialogue, public health, integration and the emancipation of women.

        The committee calls on sport organisations to further encourage women’s participation in sport and in the governance bodies of sports organisations by guaranteeing equal access to sporting activities, in particular for girls and women from disadvantaged backgrounds. It underlines that parents’ prohibiting immigrant girls from taking part in sports and swimming at school cannot be tolerated or excused on cultural or religious grounds.

        Members stress the need to fight against doping, and urge Member States to treat trafficking in illegal performance-enhancing substances in the sports world in the same way as trafficking in illegal drugs. They call on the World Anti-Doping Agency to create an easy-to-use whereabouts administration system in line with EU law and believe the accession of the EU to the Anti-Doping Convention of the Council of Europe is a necessary step.

        With regard to the issue of training, Members stress the critical importance of dual sport and career training for young sportspersons. They call on the Commission and the Member States, together with all the relevant actors, to draw up guidelines to ensure young sportspersons are able to pursue normal school and/or professional studies in addition to their sports training. They propose that a training and qualifications framework for coaches and coach education be established and incorporated in the European Qualifications Framework and Lifelong Learning Programmes in order to advance a knowledge-based society and the development of excellence in coaching at both the amateur and professional level.

        The committee moves on to call on Member States, in close consultation with the relevant federations to refuse access to stadiums to supporters who have displayed violent or discriminatory behaviour and to create a coordinated approach in setting and enforcing sanctions against them. It takes a positive view of the Member States’ drawing up minimum safety standards for stadiums, in consultation with the European sports federations, and taking all appropriate measures to ensure that players and supporters are as safe as possible.

        The economic dimension of sport: Members call on the Commission and the Member States to accord a high status to voluntary activities in sport. They favour an exchange of information and best practice between Member States in order to promote volunteering in sport and of exploring the feasibility of a legal and tax framework. They call on the Commission and the Member States to create a system for the recognition of qualifications gained by volunteers and of qualifications required for regulated sport-related professions, and stress that the mutual recognition of courses and specialist training within a unified European framework for professionals working in sport as specialists (referees, coaches) is particularly important. They make various recommendations on improving structures for sports people.

        The committee goes on to call on the Member States to consider ways of alleviating the financial burden on the lowest-paid professional sportspersons, who have brief and fluctuating careers. On matters of financing, it discuss the fundamental importance of commercial exploitation of audiovisual rights for sport competitions being carried out on a centralised, exclusive and territorial basis with a view to guaranteeing that revenues are distributed fairly between elite and mass-participation sport. Member States should ensure that broadcasters under its jurisdiction do not broadcast such events on an exclusive basis.

        With regard to bets, the report considers that betting on sport is a form of commercial exploitation of competitions and calls on the Commission and the Member States to protect betting from unauthorised activities, from unlicensed operators and from suspicions of match fixing. Members reiterate their request that the Commission draw up guidelines on state aid, indicating what type of public support is legitimate with a view to achieving the social, cultural and educational goals of sport.

        They discuss the following matters:

        ·        effective action to fight corruption and promote ethics in sport, with strict rules on the financial supervision of sports clubs;

        ·        concrete measures to secure the funding of sport generated by lotteries;

        ·        grass-roots sport should benefit from the European Regional Development Fund and the European Social Fund, which should allow for investment in sports infrastructure .

        Organisation of sport: noting that sports structures in Europe are based on the principles of nationality and territoriality, the committee reaffirms its attachment to the European model of sport, within which federations play a central role and which has various actors, including supporters, players, clubs, leagues, associations and volunteers at its base, which have a fundamental role in supporting the entire sport structure. It calls for a reduction in the barriers to volunteering in sport across the EU.

        It calls for good governance in sport, with zero tolerance for corruption in sport.

        On the matter of organisation, Members stress the following:

        ·        sporting clubs should make players available when they are selected for national teams, 

        ·        ensure that high-level sport does not affect the development of young sportsmen, amateur sports and the essential role of grassroots sporting organisations

        ·        commitment to the home-grown player rule

        ·        the importance of training allowances, as these provide an effective protection mechanism for training centres and a fair return on investment;

        ·        the profession of sports agents should be a regulated professional activity, and subject to an adequate official qualification and that sports agents’ fiscal residence should be within EU territory in the interest of transparency;

        ·        draw up and implement, in cooperation with the sports federations, players’ unions and agents’ associations, a European licensing and registration system accompanied by a code of conduct and a sanctioning mechanism;

        ·        supplement existing regulatory provisions governing players’ agents / intermediaries with deterrent sanctions and to implement these sanctions rigorously;

        ·        make international transfers more transparent

        Members propose the setting up by sports federations of a non-public European register of sports agents, in which agents would list the names of the players that they represent, so as to protect athletes, in particular those below the age of 18 so as to limit the risk of conflicts of interest.  

        On the issue of finance, Members stress the need to improve governance, restore long-term financial stability and sustainability of clubs and contribute to financial fairness in European competitions. They welcome the efforts of sports federations to ban the ownership of more than one sports club engaged in the same competition. They take the view that betting operators should be prohibited from holding a controlling stake in a body which organises or participates in competitions.

        They urge Member States to take all necessary action to prevent and punish illegal activities affecting the integrity of sport and making such activities a criminal offence; in particular where such they are betting-related.

        Cooperation with non-member States and international organisations: the report calls on the Commission and the Member States to cooperate with non-member states on issues such as international player transfers, exploitation of underage players, match fixing piracy and illegal betting. It looks forward to the results of systems put in place for monitoring transparency and financial fair play and for combating corruption and human trafficking. Members call on the Commission and the Member States to promote in all cooperation with non-member states the global respect of Olympic rules and regulations. They also stress the need to: (i) ensure compliance with immigration laws |(ii) boost the protection of minors in the context of international transfers;; (iii) the absolute freedom to exercise any kind of sport for both women and men.

        European identity through sport: Members propose a series of measures to strengthen the European dimension. They call for a ‘European Day of Sports’ every year, the designation of a ‘European capital of sport’ every year, and raising awareness of these games through the promotion of a European map and European festivals. They suggest that the European flag should be flown at major international sports events held on the EU territory and suggests to sports federations to consider the idea of having it displayed on the clothing of athletes from Member States, alongside the national flags.

        Lastly, Members calls on the Commission to provide the Union with a specific budget programme in the field of sport, and submit, by 2012, a proposal aimed at gaining a better understanding of the specific needs of the sports sector and taking practical action to address them, with full regard to the provisions of Article 165 TFEU.

      type
      Committee report tabled for plenary, single reading
      title
      A7-0385/2011
    body
    type
    Committee report tabled for plenary, single reading
  • date
    2011-11-21
    docs
    • url
      http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?type=REPORT&mode=XML&reference=A7-2011-0385&language=EN
      text
      • The Committee on culture and education adopted the own-initiative report by Santiago FISAS AYXELA (EPP, ES) on the European dimension in sport.

        Members recall that billions of people throughout the world play sports invented, codified and disseminated in Europe and sport plays an important part in the European economy, as it directly or indirectly employs 15 million people, and represents an annual added value of approximately EUR 407 billion, or 3.65% of Europe’s GDP. They also recall that 35 million amateurs assist the development of mass-participation sport and the dissemination of sporting ideals.

        The social role of sport: Members urge the Commission to propose a dedicated and ambitious budget for sports policy under the future MFF given the public health, social, cultural and economic benefits of sport.

        The Commission is also asked to:

        ·        make use of its coordinating function in sport to gather examples of best practice from the Member States and make these available to all interested parties throughout Europe in a central database;

        ·        encourage the practice of sport among senior citizens as it helps to promote social interaction and high rates of good health.

        For their part, Member States are asked to:

        ·        ensure that sport becomes a subject in the curriculum of schools of all kinds, and underlines the importance of encouraging participation in sports at all levels of education, from early years onwards;

        ·        promote and support the cooperation of schools and sports clubs; 

        ·        increase their grants to organisations that seek to integrate through sport people at risk of social exclusion or that promote sport for physically or mentally disabled people;

        ·        prevent and fight against any form of discrimination or racism.

        Members underline the importance of making sport available to all citizens in many different settings, whether at school, at work, as a recreational activity or through clubs and associations.

        They stress the great socially-integrating power of sport in many areas, including civic commitment and the conception of democracy, the promotion of good health, urban development, and education. They also stress the role of sport   as a means of promoting peace, economic growth, intercultural dialogue, public health, integration and the emancipation of women.

        The committee calls on sport organisations to further encourage women’s participation in sport and in the governance bodies of sports organisations by guaranteeing equal access to sporting activities, in particular for girls and women from disadvantaged backgrounds. It underlines that parents’ prohibiting immigrant girls from taking part in sports and swimming at school cannot be tolerated or excused on cultural or religious grounds.

        Members stress the need to fight against doping, and urge Member States to treat trafficking in illegal performance-enhancing substances in the sports world in the same way as trafficking in illegal drugs. They call on the World Anti-Doping Agency to create an easy-to-use whereabouts administration system in line with EU law and believe the accession of the EU to the Anti-Doping Convention of the Council of Europe is a necessary step.

        With regard to the issue of training, Members stress the critical importance of dual sport and career training for young sportspersons. They call on the Commission and the Member States, together with all the relevant actors, to draw up guidelines to ensure young sportspersons are able to pursue normal school and/or professional studies in addition to their sports training. They propose that a training and qualifications framework for coaches and coach education be established and incorporated in the European Qualifications Framework and Lifelong Learning Programmes in order to advance a knowledge-based society and the development of excellence in coaching at both the amateur and professional level.

        The committee moves on to call on Member States, in close consultation with the relevant federations to refuse access to stadiums to supporters who have displayed violent or discriminatory behaviour and to create a coordinated approach in setting and enforcing sanctions against them. It takes a positive view of the Member States’ drawing up minimum safety standards for stadiums, in consultation with the European sports federations, and taking all appropriate measures to ensure that players and supporters are as safe as possible.

        The economic dimension of sport: Members call on the Commission and the Member States to accord a high status to voluntary activities in sport. They favour an exchange of information and best practice between Member States in order to promote volunteering in sport and of exploring the feasibility of a legal and tax framework. They call on the Commission and the Member States to create a system for the recognition of qualifications gained by volunteers and of qualifications required for regulated sport-related professions, and stress that the mutual recognition of courses and specialist training within a unified European framework for professionals working in sport as specialists (referees, coaches) is particularly important. They make various recommendations on improving structures for sports people.

        The committee goes on to call on the Member States to consider ways of alleviating the financial burden on the lowest-paid professional sportspersons, who have brief and fluctuating careers. On matters of financing, it discuss the fundamental importance of commercial exploitation of audiovisual rights for sport competitions being carried out on a centralised, exclusive and territorial basis with a view to guaranteeing that revenues are distributed fairly between elite and mass-participation sport. Member States should ensure that broadcasters under its jurisdiction do not broadcast such events on an exclusive basis.

        With regard to bets, the report considers that betting on sport is a form of commercial exploitation of competitions and calls on the Commission and the Member States to protect betting from unauthorised activities, from unlicensed operators and from suspicions of match fixing. Members reiterate their request that the Commission draw up guidelines on state aid, indicating what type of public support is legitimate with a view to achieving the social, cultural and educational goals of sport.

        They discuss the following matters:

        ·        effective action to fight corruption and promote ethics in sport, with strict rules on the financial supervision of sports clubs;

        ·        concrete measures to secure the funding of sport generated by lotteries;

        ·        grass-roots sport should benefit from the European Regional Development Fund and the European Social Fund, which should allow for investment in sports infrastructure .

        Organisation of sport: noting that sports structures in Europe are based on the principles of nationality and territoriality, the committee reaffirms its attachment to the European model of sport, within which federations play a central role and which has various actors, including supporters, players, clubs, leagues, associations and volunteers at its base, which have a fundamental role in supporting the entire sport structure. It calls for a reduction in the barriers to volunteering in sport across the EU.

        It calls for good governance in sport, with zero tolerance for corruption in sport.

        On the matter of organisation, Members stress the following:

        ·        sporting clubs should make players available when they are selected for national teams, 

        ·        ensure that high-level sport does not affect the development of young sportsmen, amateur sports and the essential role of grassroots sporting organisations

        ·        commitment to the home-grown player rule

        ·        the importance of training allowances, as these provide an effective protection mechanism for training centres and a fair return on investment;

        ·        the profession of sports agents should be a regulated professional activity, and subject to an adequate official qualification and that sports agents’ fiscal residence should be within EU territory in the interest of transparency;

        ·        draw up and implement, in cooperation with the sports federations, players’ unions and agents’ associations, a European licensing and registration system accompanied by a code of conduct and a sanctioning mechanism;

        ·        supplement existing regulatory provisions governing players’ agents / intermediaries with deterrent sanctions and to implement these sanctions rigorously;

        ·        make international transfers more transparent

        Members propose the setting up by sports federations of a non-public European register of sports agents, in which agents would list the names of the players that they represent, so as to protect athletes, in particular those below the age of 18 so as to limit the risk of conflicts of interest.  

        On the issue of finance, Members stress the need to improve governance, restore long-term financial stability and sustainability of clubs and contribute to financial fairness in European competitions. They welcome the efforts of sports federations to ban the ownership of more than one sports club engaged in the same competition. They take the view that betting operators should be prohibited from holding a controlling stake in a body which organises or participates in competitions.

        They urge Member States to take all necessary action to prevent and punish illegal activities affecting the integrity of sport and making such activities a criminal offence; in particular where such they are betting-related.

        Cooperation with non-member States and international organisations: the report calls on the Commission and the Member States to cooperate with non-member states on issues such as international player transfers, exploitation of underage players, match fixing piracy and illegal betting. It looks forward to the results of systems put in place for monitoring transparency and financial fair play and for combating corruption and human trafficking. Members call on the Commission and the Member States to promote in all cooperation with non-member states the global respect of Olympic rules and regulations. They also stress the need to: (i) ensure compliance with immigration laws |(ii) boost the protection of minors in the context of international transfers;; (iii) the absolute freedom to exercise any kind of sport for both women and men.

        European identity through sport: Members propose a series of measures to strengthen the European dimension. They call for a ‘European Day of Sports’ every year, the designation of a ‘European capital of sport’ every year, and raising awareness of these games through the promotion of a European map and European festivals. They suggest that the European flag should be flown at major international sports events held on the EU territory and suggests to sports federations to consider the idea of having it displayed on the clothing of athletes from Member States, alongside the national flags.

        Lastly, Members calls on the Commission to provide the Union with a specific budget programme in the field of sport, and submit, by 2012, a proposal aimed at gaining a better understanding of the specific needs of the sports sector and taking practical action to address them, with full regard to the provisions of Article 165 TFEU.

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European dimension in sport
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© European Union, 2011 – Source: European Parliament