UK Sport receives Government assurance on Tokyo funding
UK Sport are pleased to confirm that it has received assurance from the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport around its funding requirements for 2021 – 2022 (link to letter from the Secretary of State is available here). Importantly, this assurance means sports are now able to move forward with their plans for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games scheduled for the summer of 2021.
The Secretary of State has also agreed for UK Sport to utilise its existing Lottery Underwrite* to create a fund to support national governing bodies (NGBs) negatively impacted by the Coronavirus pandemic.
Sally Munday, CEO of UK Sport said:
“Since the outset of the Coronavirus pandemic we’ve maintained really positive dialogue with the DCMS who have been very supportive during what has been an extremely challenging time for sport.
“Today’s confirmation of support for Olympic and Paralympic sport through to the rescheduled Tokyo Games is hugely important as it allows national governing bodies to commit to their revised plans for the Games next summer. For sports fans everywhere this is also a significant step as we all look forward to watching our brilliant Olympic and Paralympic athletes perform on the world stage and inspire the nation once again.
“The new Continuity Fund will help in our efforts to maintain and enable a thriving high-performance sporting system in the UK. Via this Fund we will be able to provide additional investment to support those organisations in greatest need and help enable continued operation during these challenging times. The Fund opened today, and we hope to be in a position to make awards shortly.”
Sports Minister Nigel Huddleston said:
“In this time of uncertainty, we are right behind our elite athletes. Recent Olympic and Paralympic Games have proven that their performances make the country proud, promote the best of the UK abroad and help to inspire a more healthy, active nation.
"I know our athletes had worked so hard to be in peak condition this month, so I'm very pleased to provide assurance to UK Sport and give athletes the opportunity to compete, realise their medal potential and shine when the Tokyo Games take place in 2021."
UK Sport’s Exchequer funding only runs until March 2021. The clarity provided by today’s news will now allow NGBs to start booking qualification competitions for their athletes, organising training camps whilst also enabling them to maintain their network of support staff. It also provides the athletes themselves with the reassurance that their Athlete Performance Awards will be extended.
It is expected that the Government will announce a Comprehensive Spending Review in the Autumn where they will consider financial settlements across the public sector from April 2021 onwards. At this point, UK Sport will make a full submission for funding for the Paris Olympic and Paralympic cycle.
Additionally, this news has enabled the UK Sport Board to commit to a range of funding decisions as part of its regular Annual Review process. Decisions included uplifts in investment for Olympic and Paralympic Ski and Snowboard and Curling.
There was also further funding for a range of Aspiration Fund and Medal Support Plan sports, including badminton, fencing and archery, who had already committed the majority of their budgets to the Games in 2020 and will now receive further support to help them reach the rescheduled Games next year.
The Continuity Fund has been developed to provide support to assist eligible organisations with their financial and operational continuity. The Fund is designed to help address any immediate risk of business insolvency over the next three to six months, and to help mitigate short or medium-term adverse impacts on the financial and operational health of organisations.
The additional investment available via the Continuity Fund is designed to complement other sources of business and financial support already provided by Government, UK Sport and Sport England. While the Fund will be led by UK Sport, we are working in close collaboration with our partners at Sport England to ensure that the support we provide is aligned well across the sporting system.
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