Nordic sports minsters call for an increased international fight against doping in sport

Minister of Culture, Linda Hofstad Helleland, invited the other Nordic sports ministers to a meeting in Rio to discuss measures to increase the number of female leaders in international sport.

Ministers of Sports in Rio. Minister of State for Tourism and Sport of Irland Patrick O'Donovan, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Sport, Tourism and Heritage of UK Tracey Crouch, Minister for Health Care, Public Health and Sport of Sweden Gabriel Wickström, Minister of Culture of Norway Linda Hofstad Helleland, Minister of Education, Science and Culture of Island Illugi Gunnarsson, Minister for Culture and Minister for Ecclesiastical Affairs of Denmark Bertel Haarder and ‎Ambassador of Finland to Brazil Markku Virri.
Ministers of Sports in Rio. From left: Minister of State for Tourism and Sport of Irland Patrick O'Donovan, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Sport, Tourism and Heritage of UK Tracey Crouch, Minister for Health Care, Public Health and Sport of Sweden Gabriel Wickström, Minister of Culture of Norway Linda Hofstad Helleland, Minister of Education, Science and Culture of Island Illugi Gunnarsson, Minister for Culture and Minister for Ecclesiastical Affairs of Denmark Bertel Haarder and ‎Ambassador of Finland to Brazil Markku Virri. Credit: The Norwegian Consulate General in Rio de Janeiro

In addition to the ministers from Denmark, Finland, Iceland and Sweden, the sports ministers of the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland provided valuable contributions to the discussion.

The agenda for the meeting was good governance in sport, with a particular focus on improving female representation in a male dominant world of sports leadership.

The participating countries presented main challenges as they see them and shared best practice. Minister Hofstad Helleland brought up the Norwegian Football Association's school project in Jordan as an example to be followed.

In conclusion, Minister Hofstad Helleland expressed her gratitude for the ministers' valuable contributions, which will be included in the further work on recommendations to be presented to the IOC in the autumn of 2017. 

New joint Nordic statement

As a follow-up to the statement from the Nordic ministers of sport issued at the Youth Olympic Games in Lillehammer in February 2016, the ministers have signed a new statement calling for an increased international fight against doping in sport. The Nordic ministers point out that testing and monitoring of athletes must be carried out by separate and independent bodies in accordance with the World Anti-Doping Code.

Recent events have shown that it is necessary to step-up the fight for a clean and doping-free sport. We must move from words to action, says the Minister.

There is a strong need for a joint effort among governments and sports organisations in increasing transparency in sport and in providing protection for those who acts as informants, says Hofstad Helleland.

The statement from the Nordic sports ministers: 

The Nordic Ministers of Sport call for an increased effort in the fight against doping

The Nordic statement on Good Governance issued at Lillehammer in February 2016 noted the threats to the values and integrity of sport and highlighted the importance of good democratic structures and control mechanisms as means of combatting corruption and mismanagement and strengthen the credibility of international sports organisations.  

Recent events have again brought good governance and in particular the fight against doping to the forefront of the world's attention.

Recognizing the need for a unified and strengthened effort in this area from governments as well as from the Sports movement, we the ministers from Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden call for an increased effort internationally for the fight against doping through WADA, the UNESCO Convention against doping in Sport and the international Sports Organisations, and for a strengthened awareness on anti-doping in sports.

Highlighting that the testing and monitoring of athletes must be carried out by bodies separate and independent in accordance with the World Anti-Doping Code.

We note that transparency is essential to all aspects of the anti-doping effort.

We emphasize the importance of providing protection for those who act as informants, and of providing adequate resources to ensure the quality and longevity of the anti-doping effort.

We will continue to address this issue in all appropriate fora and call upon other stakeholders to do the same.