The fourth meeting of the Founding Working Group (FWG) on the fight against irregular and illegal betting concluded today with the approval of a set of recommendations aimed at bolstering education on the issue, monitoring, exchange of information and intelligence, and legislation.
The FWG called for the establishment of an Olympic Movement monitoring system based on the one in place during the London 2012 Olympic Games that would be made available to the International Federations during major competitions to share information regarding suspicious betting activity. The FWG also called on national sports betting regulatory authorities to strengthen ties between themselves as well as with sports organisations and betting operators.
“Irregular and illegal betting attacks the very foundations of sport, and our efforts to combat the threat require the commitment of a number of important partners, specifically governments,” said International Olympic Committee President Jacques Rogge, who chaired Tuesday’s meeting. “The setting up of a common sports monitoring system still needs to be discussed by the Olympic Movement, but the work undertaken by the Founding Working Group is paving the way forward and we have made significant progress since our first meeting in 2011.”
The meeting in Lausanne was attended by representatives of the sports world, governments, international organisations and betting operators. The FWG called on sports organisations worldwide to use all existing tools and measures to raise awareness of the issue as well as the ethical standards and risks involved, and recommended that national authorities implement educational programmes aimed at informing stakeholders of the dangers of match-fixing and other activity designed to manipulate sports events.
On the topic of legislation, the FWG urged governments and sports organisations to adopt rules designed to combat irregular and illegal betting at all levels. States that have not yet done so should pass appropriate legislation, a process that should be facilitated by the convention against the manipulation of sports competitions currently being drafted by the Council of Europe and fully supported by the FWG.