The International Olympic Committee has during its 123rd session on the 8th of July in Durban rewarded IFF and Floorball with the full IOC recognition, based on the recommendation of the IOC Executive Board.
Mr. Tomas Eriksson, IFF President, expresses the situation in the following way: "Floorball has been given the full IOC recognition, for which Floorball is very thankful to the IOC and its administration. I see this as an important step towards participation in the Olympic Games, and the Youth Olympic Games, and we consider this a token of the good work that all Floorball stakeholders have done during the 25th years of IFF’s existence."
IFF first applied for the IOC recognition in 2003 after having received the provisional recognition of General Association of the International Sport Federations (GAISF), but then the IOC was in the process to change the procedure for recognition and therefore the application was never even discussed.
IFF then received the provisional IOC recognition in 2008 in-line with the new requirements and application in 2007, after a decision by the IOC Executive Board. When the IOC EB decided about the provisional recognition, they raised a requirement for IFF, to further focus and enhance the activities in order to develop the sport on a more universal level, spreading the sport especially outside of Europe was stressed.
IFF took this advice very seriously and continued to work with the IFF Development Programme Activities, which are designed to increase the outreach especially outside of Europe. Floorball has strengthened its presence in especially Asia and is also growing in Africa and in the Americas.
The IOC member Peter Tallberg (FIN) congratulated Floorball for the achievement. "The real work will only start now for Floorball in order to reach the ultimate goal, a participation in the Olympic Summer Games," Mr. Tallberg expressed.
IFF has also followed the advice, that it is important to have only active and functional members. IFF has now 53 member associations and the number of countries where Floorball is played is growing steadily.
"The full recognition will give our member associations a better possibility to apply for membership in the National Olympic Committees, and by that strengthen the presence of Floorball in their respective countries. We have now taken yet another step forward to fulfill our vision by becoming a Olympic Sport," says Tomas Eriksson, IFF President.