UK and France sign new agreements to tackle corruption and match fixing

Business News

The British and French Governments have agreed to share expertise and best practice to help tackle sports corruption and match-fixing through illegal and irregular sports betting.

The Declaration of Intention was signed by Matt Hancock and the French Sports Minister Laura Flessel as part of the UK-France Summit taking place this week.

Matt Hancock said, the UK and France are steadfast allies in the battle against corruption. Doping and match-fixing scandals have rocked international sport in recent years and it is crucial that we take a global approach, working together to ensure the integrity of sport is upheld. Fans have to be able to believe in fair play in sport and be inspired by the best athletes in the world.

Through the work of UK Anti-Doping, the Gambling Commission’s Sports Betting Intelligence Unit and our Code for Sports Governance we are ensuring that our sports bodies are more transparent and uphold the highest standards on integrity and governance. We want to share best practice with other nations and this agreement with France underlines how important it is to work in partnership on the threat of corruption.

At the 2016 Anti-Corruption Summit in London, the UK joined the International Partnership against Corruption in Sport that has brought together the International Olympic Committee, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, and the Council of Europe and United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.

At a meeting of the partnership in Paris in December 2017, it was agreed that three task forces would be created to reduce corruption risks in procurement relating to sporting events and infrastructure, ensuring integrity in the selection of host cities for major sporting events and mitigating the risk of corruption by improving compliance with good governance.

The UK Code for Sports Governance, was announced in the government’s sport strategy. The code came into force in April 2017 and to date, 55 out of 58 national sports bodies have complied with the code, ensuring more diverse board membership and increasing transparency to help fans and those taking part better understand the decision-making of those leading their sports.

Under the Declaration of Intention, the UK has also agreed to share with France best practice and expertise gained from hosting the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and England hosting the Rugby World Cup in 2015.

France will host the Rugby World Cup in 2023 and Paris will stage the Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2024.

London 2012 generated over £14 billion worth of trade and investment for the UK while the 2015 Rugby World Cup, held in 11 host cities across England, set new attendance, viewership and competition records, generating an additional £1.1 billion to the UK economy.