— Published 8 June 2023

The IOC no longer wants to recognise the IBA

The end for the IBA. Boxing’s world governing body has tumbled down another flight of stairs in one fell swoop. They could be the last before it disappears from the landscape. Its recognition by the IOC, already suspended since June 2019, could be more formally withdrawn before the end of the year. The IOC Executive Board, which held an emergency meeting on Wednesday 7 June to make a final decision on the IBA’s case, decided to recommend to the next Session of the Olympic body, scheduled for October 2023 in Mumbai (India), to withdraw the IBA’s recognition. The IOC explains in a press release that this decision “is based on the comprehensive report dated 2 June 2023 drawn up by the IOC on the situation of the IBA, which the IOC Executive Board has examined and approved today”. The document states that the IBA has failed to meet the conditions required for the lifting of the suspension of its recognition. In the short term, the IBA’s sidelining should have no impact on the boxing tournament at the Paris 2024 Games. The body chaired by Russia’s Umar Kremlev was already excluded, including from the qualifying stages. And the IOC makes this clear in its press release: its Executive Board “also recommends to the Session, in the interest of boxers and boxing, to maintain boxing on the sports programme of the Paris 2024 Games.” In the medium term, the likely withdrawal of IBA recognition could open the door wide in the Olympic movement to Olympic boxing’s new body, World Boxing. Formed last month, it is currently governed by a temporary executive committee. But the provisional will become more stable next November when it holds its first elections. The United States, Great Britain and Switzerland have already announced their decision to leave the IBA and join World Boxing. For the IOC, this newcomer could quickly become an alternative to the cumbersome IBA.