The International Olympic Committee (IOC) welcomes the initiative by the new United Nations (UN) Secretary-General, António Guterres, to even further enhance the already excellent cooperation with the IOC. The UN Secretary-General had proposed this in his meeting with IOC President Thomas Bach in January 2017. In this meeting, both leaders had agreed to establish a “direct partnership” between the UN and the IOC.
By means of this direct partnership, the UN will have direct access to the expertise and know-how of the IOC and its 206 National Olympic Committees, as well as the International Sports Federations. This is a more streamlined approach and will avoid parallel work. As a consequence of this decision, the UN Secretary-General has decided to close the United Nations Office on Sport for Development and Peace (UNOSDP).
“We are enthusiastic about the great potential of this direct partnership with the United Nations and we thank the United Nations Secretary–General, António Guterres, for his initiative. This will strengthen the position of sport even more in society and will help sport to fulfil its role as ‘an important enabler of sustainable development’, as outlined in the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. The direct partnership is fully in line with the UN resolution, which ‘supports the independence and autonomy of sport as well as the mission of the IOC in leading the Olympic Movement’,” IOC President Thomas Bach said.