Two days before the opening of the 18th FINA World Championships in Gwangju (KOR), the FINA Bureau met today and opened by observing a minute of silence in memory of FINA Vice-President Dennis Miller (FIJ), who passed away on June 1, 2019.

The FINA Bureau was then welcomed by the Mayor of the City, Lee Yong Sup. Actively involved in the successful organisation of the event, Mr Lee ensured that everything was done “in order to guarantee the best possible experience at these World Championships”. The Mayor of Gwangju wished the FINA Family a “pleasant stay” in Korea and underlined the organisers’ wish to provide “one of the best editions of the Championships in FINA’s history”.

The highlights of the FINA Bureau discussions included: 

-The Bureau acknowledged the elections held in Oceania Swimming Association, proposing Matthew Dunn (AUS), as Vice-President from Oceania, and Romani Katoa (COK) as new Bureau member. These nominations need to be approved by the FINA General Congress, on July 19, 2019; 

-Acknowledgement of the outstanding level of participation at the FINA showcase: no less than 2563 athletes (plus two additional competitors in the Refugee Team) in the six aquatic disciplines from 194 nations – a new record – have registered for the competition;

-Presentation and approval of the Audit Committee recommendation concerning the compliance of the FINA 2018 Financial Statements, to be further validated by the FINA General Congress; 

-Implementation of a FINA Electoral Commission, which will oversee and take final decision on the procedures for the election of President, Vice-President and Bureau Members, in full compliance with FINA Constitution and regulations. The FINA Bureau will nominate the independent members of the Electoral Commission;

-The Bureau also adopted new By-laws concerning “Regulations for elections”;

-Approval of the “Pools for All” programme, by which FINA will provide assistance in the construction of swimming pools in countries which lack aquatic facilities; 

-Confirmation of the Diving World Series calendar for 2020;

-The Bureau received the “2019 National Member Federations Status”, a document detailing all 209 FINA members’ statistics (this report will also be distributed at the FINA General Congress); 

-Presentation of encouraging reports on the various FINA Development Programme’s initiatives: Scholarship for athletes, Clinics and Schools, Aquatics managers’ programme, Olympic Aquatic Support Programme, E-learning platform, and Water Polo specific development project;

-Award of the following competitions:

FINA World Junior Artistic Swimming Championships 2020 – Quebec City (CAN)

FINA World Junior Diving Championships 2020 – Kiev (UKR)

FINA Marathon Swimming OG Qualification 2020 – Fukuoka (JPN)

FINA Men’s WP Qualification Tournament 2020 – Rotterdam (NED)

FINA Women’s WP Qualification Tournament 2020 – Italy (city tbc)

FINA World Women’s Youth WP Championships (18&U) 2020 – Netanya (ISR)

FINA World Men’s Youth WP Championships (18&U) 2020 – Istanbul (TUR)

FINA World WP Age Group Championships 2020 (16&U) – Volos (GRE)

-A detailed report on the next FINA World Championships in Fukuoka (JPN) in 2021 was presented and included items such as venues, accommodation, transportation, mascots, and organising committee structure.