AsianFootballConfederation(AFC)President, ShaikhSalmanbinEbrahimAlKhalifa,andhis ConfederationAfricainedeFootball(CAF)counterpart, IssaHayatou,signedanagreementon18Januaryaimed atdeliveringsportingandsocialbenefitsinthenextfouryears.
The agreement, signed in Kigali, Rwanda, is a cooperation between the two football Confederations on football and social development programmes, which covers areas including coaching, refereeing, youth football, women’s football, integrity, administration, marketing, media and innovative technologies.
Shaikh Salman said: “Africa and Asia are two great continents. Two great football 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’s and age group competitions.
“This Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) will deliver a legacy of not only sporting but also cultural, social and educational benefits for both our continents and our Member Associations. Football has a unique opportunity to contribute to social cohesion, integration and participation across Asia and Africa.”
Work on the agreement began in May 2015 when the two Confederation General Secretaries met in Zurich. It also includes sharing of information, experience, initiating high level competitions, as well as conducting joint technical development programmes.
Issa Hayatou, the CAF President, added: “Partnerships have linked us in the past through many areas including competitions between our teams and exchange of officials. There are many similarities between the continents of Asia and Africa and that is why we wish to work closely together in the next four years.”