The FIBA Central Board, the supreme executive body of the International Basketball Federation, met over the weekend in Paris, France. Amongst a variety of items, the 20 members discussed the relation between national federations, clubs and leagues, changes to the official basketball rules, new qualification criteria for the Olympic Games and FIBA World Championships, regulations governing player agents and a new FIBA ethics code.

Relationship between National Federations, Clubs and Leagues

Following the first conclusions of its last meeting in November 2003 in Alcobendas, Spain, the Central Board has continued with the evaluation of the relationships between national federations, Zones, clubs and leagues on a global level. For this purpose, a detailed questionnaire has been sent out earlier this year to all 212 national member federations of FIBA. All answers, which were received so far, including those of the strongest federations, gave a detailed insight into the complex relation between them and their leagues. The Central Board concluded that the current process be pursued to identify the institutional mechanism for a stable and positive relationship of the federative structure with leagues. It also decided that this process and such a mechanism must be finalized and
approved at its spring session in 2005. The Central Board therefore instructed at the same time all its constituencies to participate in the process and, where necessary, to open the dialogue with leagues to contribute in a timely manner to the identification of the appropriate mechanism.

Rule Changes

The technical experts of FIBA have worked on the FIBA rule book and presented a simplified and
shorter version of the official FIBA rulebook with a total 50 articles and with all basketball equipment
descriptions been moved to the Appendix. Some changes were made to the existing playing rules of
which the most important are the following:

  • Player substitution is allowed for both teams after a violation
  • 12 players are allowed for all games
  • Two digit numbers can be used on game uniforms for national competitions (1-99), for FIBA competitions the numbers 4 – 15 will be used.
  • Two unsportsmanlike fouls of one player will result in a disqualification of that player.
  • When a player falls down to fake a foul he will receive a technical foul.
  • Technical Foul will be sanctioned with two free throws followed by ball possession.
  • The FIBA Central Board has approved the new rules which will apply as of 1st September 2004. The new FIBA rules are available on

    New Qualification Criteria for the Olympic Games and World Championships

    Upon the recommendation of the Commission for International Competitions a variety of important
    changes have been made to the competition structure of the main FIBA competitions:

  • The Olympic Champions for Men and Women will qualify automatically for the FIBA World Championships as of the 2004 Olympics.
  • The FIBA World Champions for Men and Women will qualify automatically for the Olympic Basketball Tournaments as of the 2006 World Championships.
  • A World Olympic Qualifying Tournament for Men and for Women will be played before the 2008 Olympics. This will give 3 teams from the men and 5 from the women a chance to qualify for the Olympics if they did not qualify through the Continental Championship. The dates for these
    two tournaments will be will be further studied by the Commission and approved by the FIBA Central Board in November 2004.
  • Regulations about Player Agents

    After an intense survey and a meeting with representatives from the player agents, the Central Board has approved in principle the Regulations regarding player agents. Specific ethical principles and guidelines will be integrated into the Regulations for the Board’s final approval at its next meeting in November 2004.

    FIBA Code of Ethics

    Closely following the model of the International Olympic Committee, FIBA has approved its own Code of Ethics. An independent Ethics Council has been created for this purpose which consists of FIBA Secretary General Emeritus Borislav Stankovic as Chair, together with the former FIBA
    Presidents Abdoulaye Seye Moreau from Senegal and George. E. Killian from the United States of America.

    FIBA World Championship 2006 in Japan

    The Organizing Committee headed by the Vice President of the Japanese Basketball Federation, Mr. Takeshi Ishikawa, gave an extensive report which included a report on the facilities of the five cities chosen for the event: Sapporo, Sendai, Hamamatsu, Hiroshima and Saitama. The FIBA World Championship will be played from 19th August – 3rd September 2004 and will display 24 teams from
    five continents.

    For further information please contact:

    Mr. Florian Wanninger
    Tel (+41-22) 545 00 00
    Fax (+41-22) 545 00 99