FIBA, the governing body of basketball, and IWBF, the governing body of wheelchair basketball, have announced further steps to intensify their relationship with the common goal to develop and grow basketball across the world.

The two organizations reaffirmed their close collaboration following recent meetings by the IWBF Executive Council and the FIBA Executive Committee, where it was approved by both Executive Boards to intensify the cooperation.

The first step in doing so saw FIBA’s Secretary General Andreas Zagklis co-opted as a member of the IWBF Executive Council, with the proposal to make a FIBA representative a permanent member of the IWBF Executive Council at the IWBF World Congress later this year in Dubai, UAE.

Further steps will include IWBF President Ulf Mehrens invited on to a FIBA body, as well as FIBA holding the exclusive license for the commercial rights of IWBF for the next four-year cycle.

FIBA Secretary General, Andreas Zagklis said:

“FIBA has been working closely with the IWBF for numerous years and we are happy to take another step to further strengthen this relationship. One of our strategic priorities currently is to ‘Enlarge the FIBA Family’ and this collaboration can only further enhance the links between the two organzations and promote the game.”

IWBF President, Ulf Mehrens, said:

“Being a part of the basketball family is unique and invaluable. Our visions are shared to not only grow the sport of basketball, whether it is in a wheelchair or running, but to also inspire and use the power of the sport to overcome the social and cultural barriers across the world. To be able to integrate and form a closer working relationship with FIBA allows us to have a more joint approach when aspiring to meet these aims. We are one family and stronger together.”

The beneficial working relationship was established in 1992 by the then IWBF President Sir Philip Craven MBE and the former FIBA Secretary General Borislav Stankovic following the creation of an independent wheelchair basketball federation. IWBF is recognized as a basketball organization under the FIBA General Statutes.