FIFA, FIFPro and the key stakeholders of Asian football met on the morning of the 58th FIFA Congress in Sydney on 29 May, 2008. The meeting proved to be a fruitful platform that made tremendous headway as officials from FIFA, FIFPro, continental confederations, football associations and players’ associations and representatives came to some ground-breaking consensus after exchanging views on player-related matters.

5 important outcomes were reached at the meeting:

  1. i) FIFPro shall lead the discussions with FIFA on establishing NDRCs in China, Indonesia and Malaysia as earmarked under the FIFA pilot project.
  2. ii) Theo van Seggelen, Secretary General of FIFPro together with Brendan Schwab, Chairman of FIFPro Asia/Oceania shall begin negotiations with the AFC on similar principles as the FIFA-FIFProMoU.

iii) FIFPro Asia/Oceania would work with the OFC to execute a Memorandum of Understanding.

  1. iv) FIFPro Asia/Oceania would work with the ASEAN Football Federation to execute a Memorandum of Understanding.
  2. v) FIFPro reiterated its commitment to educate player representatives on the

important areas of work including establishing NDRCs, the minimum requirements in Standard Player Contracts and the objectives of FIFPro.

“This meeting is historic as it brought together for the first time, the various stakeholders of Asian football, including players’ associations and representatives, with FIFA and FIFPro to discuss the important issues pertaining to football in general and Asia’s professional players in particular,” said van Seggelen who was full of praise for the attendees.

Mr. Schwab, who is also the Chief Executive of the Australian PFA, stated that it was important for the AFC, OFC, and FIFA’s Asian members to witness first-hand the close cooperation between FIFA and FIFPro, the World Players’ Union and that this would prove to be the catalyst for Asian FAs to begin earnest dialogue with FIFPro’s Asian division.

This meeting was attended by Jerome Champagne, FIFA Director of International Relations, Theo van Seggelen, FIFPro Secretary General, Brendan Schwab, Frederique Winia and SanjeevanBalasingam, the Chairman, Senior General Secretary and General Secretary of FIFPro Division Asia/Oceania, Fred de Jong, OFC Vice-President, Dato’ Paul Mony Samuel, AFC General Secretary and AFF Honorary Secretary, Mdm. Xue Li, Vice-President of the Chinese FA, officials from the Australian PFA, the New Zealand PFA, the Japanese PFA, the Indian PFA as well as player representatives from Indonesia and Malaysia, the general secretaries of the Malaysian and Singaporean FAs.

A day earlier in Sydney, FIFPro Asia held its Divisional meeting where reports and presentations were submitted by the players’ representatives from Indonesia and Malaysia. These countries are at an advanced stage in the process of establishing players’ associations and to cement their commitment to this cause, a Joint Declaration was signed between, FIFPro, FIFPro Asia and the players’ representatives from these two nations.

With the dynamic progress being made by Indonesia and Malaysia, in 2009 FIFPro Division Asia/Oceania is expected to comprise six member countries including current members, Australia, Japan, New Zealand and FIFPro candidate member, India.

After such a positive outcome, Kuala Lumpur, the Malaysian capital city has been earmarked by FIFPro to host the 2nd FIFPro Asia Congress in 2009 following the successful inaugural congress of 2007 in Sydney.