On 17 May, the EOC EU Office held its Annual Partners’ Meeting at its premises in Brussels. Partners from a number of different NOCS, sports federations and organisations, including the IOC, attended in person and online.
The meeting was the first in-person gathering of the EOC EU Office partners since the outbreak of the Covid-19 Pandemic.
In a thorough and highly-productive gathering, the EOC EU Office updated its partners on EU policy fields. Topics included EU Presidencies, the European Sport Model, the recent European Super League case and gender equality in sport.
Later, discussions turned to talking points like climate and the environment, online piracy, E-Sport and the Conference on the Future of Europe.
Staff members from the EOC EU Office briefed partners on each of these subject areas and outlined the progress of the office’s ongoing EU sports projects.
The EOC EU Office was delighted to welcome Luciano di Fonzo, Deputy Head of EACEA, to the Annual Partners' Meeting. It provided an overview of the project proposals submitted by the EOC EU Office’s partners under the Erasmus+ call 2022, after which an open-discussion with Mr. Di Fonzo took place, which provided attendees with valuable insights and opportunities for questions.
Later in the afternoon, the EOC EU Office and its partners had a discussion on the sports movement’s reaction to the Russian war in Ukraine. Opening the discussion, James Macleod, Director of Olympic Solidarity and NOC Relations at the International Olympic Committee, spoke from the IOC’s offices in Lausanne about the Olympic Movement’s support to Ukrainian athletes.
There was also a special appearance online from Ukrainian NOC President Sergey Bubka, who expressed his gratitude for all the support given to Ukraine from the Olympic Movement in recent months.
An engaging roundtable discussion on Ukraine featuring contributions from partners then took place, where topics included sporting sanctions, the banning of athletes from sporting competitions, and how sport can continue to show solidarity in terms of its support for Ukrainian sportspeople.
The 2022 Annual Partners’ Meeting was concluded with an exchange on future activities led by EOC EU Office Director Mr. Folker Hellmund.