International Testing Agency (ITA) and International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) join forces in fight against doping

The International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) has signed a partnership to become the latest international federation to join the International Testing Agency (ITA).

Following a meeting at the Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games, the ITA has agreed to carry out key areas of FIG’s anti-doping programme, including updating the current risk assessment protocol, creating and amending test distribution plans, establishing a registered testing pool, administration of athlete whereabouts protocol, out of competition testing, set up and administration of Athlete Biological Passport, administration of Therapeutic Use Exemptions (TUEs), administration of WADA compliance related activities, and management of FIG’s long term storage & re-analysis programme.

(L-R): André Gueisbuhler (FIG Secretary General), Valérie Fourneyron (ITA Chair of the Board), Morinari Watanabe (FIG President) & Benjamin Cohen (ITA Director-General)

Whilst the agreement is set to formally begin in January 2019, and will run through to December 2020, with an option to extend beyond this date, the ITA has already begun its work on the above with a detailed action plan. Initial deadlines have been mutually agreed for November and December this year.

Following the announcement, FIG President Morinari Watanabe said:
“The ITA has gone from strength to strength since its establishment in July 2018, and the entire gymnastics movement will benefit from its expertise. The importance of clean sport cannot be understated and FIG looks forward to working with, and learning from, the ITA. FIG has a zero-tolerance policy for doping.”

Benjamin Cohen, Director General of the ITA said:
“FIG has demonstrated its commitment to the fight against doping by placing its trust in the ITA. We will work closely with President Watanabe and the entire FIG team to ensure that the sport of gymnastics is clean by implementing a comprehensive global anti-doping programme.”

About the author
Arunaabh Shah
IT Services Assistant, ITA