Attila CZENE, minister of state for sport at the Ministry of National Resources participated as head of the Hungarian delegation at the meeting of European sport ministers organised in Belgrade.

The governmental leaders in charge of sport held a discussion in the topics of match fixing, cooperation between EU and Council of Europe Member States and of the Enlarged Partial Agreement on Sport (EPAS).

Concerning the issue of match fixing the Hungarian minister of state for sport, Attila CZENE stated: „Hungary supports the creation of a new Agreement of the Council of Europe on match fixing, because the agreement which will be based on the Recommendations adopted last year by Council of Europe, can improve the efficiency.”. „This Agreement would ensure not only the long-term sustainability, but the commitment of the Member States would be also strengthened, since the signatories could continuously monitor the implementation.”

The Sport diplomat reminded the audience at the same time, that: „The monitoring process is currently running concerning the previous Agreements of Council of Europe, these are the Anti-Doping Convention and the European Convention on Spectator Violence and Misbehaviour at Sports Events and in particular at Football Matches”. Attila CZENE also noted: „The Hungarian State Secretariat for Sport within the Ministry of National Resources participates at these bodies too.” The Hungarian sport politician mentioned furthermore in his speech, that „The new Agreement of Council of Europe will hopefully merge the countries also from outside of Europe into one community in the future. We should be aware, that acting successfully for the maintenance of sport integrity falls under the interest of sport leaders in all the countries.”

The cooperation within Council of Europe is significant in aspects of foreign policy and sport too. It provides the opportunity for receiving actual, useful information and besides that, the progressive initiatives of the Hungarian sport governance can be also presented.

Sport ministers discussed about the possible common fields of action for the cooperation between EU and non-EU states. The Article 165 of the TFEU refers on the Council of Europe as cooperating partner for EU Member States. It was an important moment in the enhancement of the cooperation when Attila CZENE, on behalf of the Hungarian EU Presidency invited the representatives of the EU and Council of Europe from the field of sport policy for a common working lunch on 28th June 2011. This practice was also followed during the Polish Presidency and in Belgrade- for broadening the cooperation- a joint meeting was organised for the leaders of the two organisations.

During the discussion about the Enlarged Partial Agreement on Sport it was stated: „Hungary considers it essential, that most of the European countries out of the 47 Council of Europe members have already joined to the Agreement. Hungary was founding member of EPAS and has been actively participating in the work since the foundation. We do support the future work of EPAS, just like the preparation of the text of the agreement on match fixing and also the organisation of European meetings in the field of sport policy.”

Attila CZENE attended the every two year organised meeting for the second time, as he represented Hungary at the last ministerial meeting, organised in Baku, Azerbaijan too.

(Ministry of National Resources - State Secretariat for Sport)