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Parliamentary questions
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11 June 2021
Answer given by Ms Gabriel
on behalf of the European Commission
Question reference: E-002207/2021

The Commission defends a European Model of Sport based on values of integrity and inclusion. Its main principles are autonomy, openness, solidarity between grassroots and elite sports and interdependence of sports federations. Good governance based on clearly defined, transparent, non-discriminatory rules is a condition for the autonomy and self-regulation of sport organisations.

The autonomy of sport is a founding principle of the European Model of Sport. The specific nature of sport is enshrined in Article 165 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union(1). The concept of the specificity of sport was introduced by the Treaty of Lisbon and is recognised by a Resolution of the United Nations.

The way sport is organised at European level is primarily a matter for the international sport federations although those federations of course have to abide by EC law when applicable.

The Commission underlines that good governance is a condition for the autonomy and self-regulation of sport organisations and cooperates with good results and mutual satisfaction with football federations at international and European level and with all entities representing the interests of clubs, players, leagues and agents.

Since 2014, the Commission works with the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) — in the framework of an Arrangement for Cooperation — with the aim of promoting values and principles such as non-discrimination, tolerance, cultural diversity, solidarity, green sport and gender equality.

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