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European Parliament
News 2 Feb 2017

New European Parliament report on Sports Policy highlights the contribution of lotteries to grassroots sport

On February 2 the European Parliament adopted MEP Hannu Takkula’s (ALDE, Finland) Report on “Integrated Approach to Sport Policy: Good Governance, Accessibility and Integrity” which addresses a variety of topics ranging from relevance and importance of sport’s contribution to the society, economic growth and employment to good governance, doping and match-fixing.

The report explicitly welcomes the financial contributions made by national lotteries to grassroots sport. It would furthermore like to see match-fixing issue tackled, as well as a full implementation and ratification of the Council of Europe Convention on Manipulation of Sport Competitions. In that respect, national platforms could play an important role as they would allow for an exchange of information on best practices regarding prevention and fight against betting-related match-fixing. Finally, the European Parliament invites the Commission and the Member States to get involved in the upcoming EU Work Plan for Sport pilot projects related to education and prevention measures.

EL President Hansjörg Höltkemeier notes: “We are pleased that once again the significance of the lotteries for grassroots sport has been recognised and applauded by the EU institutions. It is vital that this sustainable contribution is further safeguarded. It is also very positive that the report recognises the significance of the Council of Europe Convention which is definitely the most elaborate tool against match-fixing. We therefore fully support the MEPs in their call for a timely full implementation and ratification of the Convention”.

The Takkula report comes 7 months after the adoption of the High Level Group Grassroots Sport Recommendations which also called for the safeguard of sustainable funding of grassroots sport by the lotteries. The Member States realized that by adopting concrete measures to fight illegal betting they will safeguard funding of grassroots sport which has a significant impact on the economy and employment.