ZURICH: One of the major criticisms of FIFA in the corruption-scarred last decade has been a lack of transparency over the reasons for, and destinations of, vast development grants to all six corners of the world game writes KEIR RADNEDGE.
The most recent, high-profile issue to generate widespread concern centred on monies awarded to Thailand and whether that had benefited the FAT president (and FIFA exco member) Worawi Makudi.
An investigation concluded that Makudi had no case to answer however concern over how FAT had used its FIFA handout was revived when the new Bangkok Futsal Arena proved unable to host matches in the competition’s World Cup.
Now FIFA has made available publicly an on-line tool by which it is possible to see ‘inside’ the grants system and check how much has been given to whom and for what purposes.
FIFA Development Globe offers FIFA.com users a global perspective on all FIFA development initiatives while displaying the reach and volume of the Financial Assistance Programme (FAP), the Goal programme, PERFORMANCE and technical support projects.
FIFA has also published updated information about the development funds and projects granted to all 209 member associations.
Crucial data, including details like the amounts received through FIFA’s FAP and the Goal projects, the names of the local FAP auditors and the identity of local contractors, is now available in the relevant section of each association* on FIFA.com.
Over the past 14 years, FIFA has provided more than $1bn in development funds to its member associations and confederations, of which $721.75m has been transferred to member associations through the FAP, with an extra $210m provided to the six confederations.
An additional $250m has been granted since 1998 by football’s world governing body for the implementation of 600 Goal projects in 199 member associations, and $35m has been invested under the PERFORMANCE programme.
FIFA’s budget for the 2011-2014 financial cycle amounts to $800m. This represents 56 times more than the amount invested in 1995-1998, when some of the flagship development initiatives were originally launched.