Two new National Olympic Committees on board!
The Olympic family is growing! Two new National Olympic Committees (NOCs), one for Montenegro and one for Tuvalu, have been recognised today by the 119th IOC Session in Guatemala City. Montenegro, located in south-eastern Europe, is the youngest state in the world. Tuvalu is composed of a group of small islands in the Pacific, with 12,000 inhabitants. Hence the number of National Olympic Committees across the globe now totals 205.
Youngest state, long sporting tradition
Montenegro, formerly a part of Yugoslavia and later the state union of Serbia and Montenegro, has been an independent state as well as a UN member since 2006, with 650,000 inhabitants. The country has a long sporting tradition, and its athletes contributed to achieve remarkable Yugoslav sporting results. At regional, international and Olympic competitions, Montenegrin athletes have been particularly strong in handball, water polo, volleyball, basketball, football, boxing and judo. Today Montenegro has 1,200 registered sports organisations and more than 40,000 registered athletes in 39 National Sports Federations. Seven of these National Sports Federations are affiliated to the International Federations (IFs) governing sports included on the Olympic Games' programme.
Small, but passionate about sport
Tuvalu, a Polynesian state composed of nine coral atolls, has been independent since 1978 and a member of the UN since 2000. It was in 1978 that Tuvalu took part in a regional or international competition for the first time, the South Pacific Games in Fiji. Tuvalu's population shows a significant interest in sport. One of the nation's major sporting events is the "Independence Day Sports" festival held annually on 1 October during the Independence Day celebrations. Tuvalu has 11 active National Sports Federations, of which six are affiliated to IFs governing sports included in the Olympic Games' programme (badminton, basketball, volleyball, weightlifting, tennis and table tennis). Each island has its own sports infrastructure.
IOC conditions to become an NOC
Both new organisations fulfil the fundamental conditions to be recognised by the IOC: Montenegro and Tuvalu are independent states recognised by the international community and have each at least five National Federations which are affiliated to the International Federations governing sports included in the programme of the Olympic Games.
Welcome on board, Montenegrin Olympic Committee and Tuvalu Association of Sports and National Olympic Committee!