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Football | Africa

Issa hayatou & Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa @ SS com

Africa, Asia sign cooperation pact

The Confederation of African Football (Caf) signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Asian Football Federation (AFC) at Serena Hotel in Rwanda on Friday morning for the next four years aimed at delivering sporting and social benefits.

Caf president Issa Hayatou and AFC president Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa signed the agreement in the presence of Caf Executive Committee members, AFC secretary general secretary John Windsor Dato’ as well as Caf secretary general Hicham El Amrani.

Hayatou said: “The signing of an MOU is not new in the long existing relationship between two confederations. Such partnerships have linked us in the past through several exchanges and through competitions and high level matches.

“Today we are here to re-launch a cooperation that will be beneficial to the two confederations after several months of work. The first four years will strengthen, intensify cooperation and strengthen the capacity of various stakeholders in Africa and Asia. This is an opportunity that will further contribute to African football development.”

Shaikh Salman told the media: “Africa and Asia are two great continents. Two great footballing continents who have made a dramatic impact on the global football stage in this century.

“Both of us have staged highly successful Fifa World Cups – both of us have aspirations and expectations of staging future tournaments, not only the World Cup but also in women and age group competitions,” he further added.

“Both Africa and Asia have produced a generation of outstanding players who have graced both our own and other international stages.

“Now this agreement will lay a permanent foundation to this great progress – it will underpin this development by our great two confederations. It formalises existing ties within our regions. Our common purpose – our common goal will allow us to draw on each other’s strengths.

"After several months of work and several exchanges of SG to reach the finalisation of this document, we hope that the first four years will allow us to strengthen and to intensify."

The MOU now provides for the sharing of information, experience, initiating high level competitions, as well as conducting joint technical development programmes. It will cover areas such as coaching, refereeing, youth football, women’s football, integrity, administration, marketing, media and innovative technologies.

This is a culmination of work that started in September 2015 when the two confederations' general secretaries met in Zurich.


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