The third edition of the International Forum for Sports Integrity (IFSI) took place at Olympic House in Lausanne on 28 October. During his opening speech, IOC President Thomas Bach said: “This gathering today reflects the very nature of the IFSI, which is cooperation and partnership. We are a community which shares a common goal to protect competitions from manipulation and from related corruption. In the spirit of this cooperation, we have taken many measures together since the launch of the IFSI in 2015. The most obvious example is the Council of Europe Convention on the manipulation of sports competitions, which came into effect last month and is already being implemented in a large number of countries. This is an example of the IFSI in action.”
The Forum brought together more than 100 stakeholders representing the Olympic Movement, intergovernmental agencies such as the Council of Europe, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), INTERPOL and EUROPOL, as well as sports betting operators, national regulating authorities, academics and other experts. All of the participants reaffirmed their determination to protect clean athletes and fair competition. The outcome of the Forum is summarised in a document which, amongst other conclusions, highlights the responsibility of all parties, from government, law enforcement, betting and sport, to be engaged in protecting sports integrity vis-à-vis their respective stakeholders; and the Olympic Movement Unit on the Prevention of the Manipulation of Competitions (OM Unit PMC) as the principal entity working with all partners at the international level.
During the Forum, the IOC and EUROPOL also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that will establish a mutual cooperation framework between the two organisations. This will facilitate the exchange of expertise, the dissemination of information and the engagement in joint endeavours related to the manipulation of competitions and related organised crime.