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IIHF moves to restrict presidential terms, awards hosting rights

The International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) is to introduce a maximum term of 12 years for all Council positions within the sport’s global governing body, while the organisation has also announced the hosts for a number of its upcoming national team tournaments.

The new term limits, which were approved at the 2018 IIHF Annual Congress in Copenhagen, Denmark, will apply to all future presidents, vice-presidents and members of the Council.

The changes will come into effect from 2020 when current president René Fasel (pictured) steps down after 26 years in the role. The Swiss official took charge in 1994 and will only relinquish control at the end of his sixth term having reached the age limit of 70 for the position.

Meanwhile, the IIHF has awarded hosting rights to its 2019 World Championship Division I Group A to the Kazakh capital of Astana. The national team event will run from April 29 to May 5 at the 12,000-capacity Barys Arena.

Host nation Kazakhstan will compete with Belarus, Korea, Hungary, Slovenia and Lithuania for two promotion slots that will guarantee their inclusion at the 2020 World Championship in Switzerland.

One tier below, the Division I Group B tournament with Poland, Japan, Estonia, Ukraine, Romania and the Netherlands will be played in the Estonian capital of Tallinn in the 7,700-seat Tondiraba Ice Hall. The tournament will be held from April 28 to May 4 next year.

In addition, the IIHF Annual Congress unanimously ratified the extension of its hosting and marketing agreement with the Hockey Canada national governing body for its World Junior Championship.

The new deal will run through to 2031, with Canada to host the tournament next year and then in 2021, 2024, 2026, 2028 and 2031. The agreement also confirms Canada as host for the Women’s World Championship in 2020, 2023 and 2027.

The Czech cities of Ostrava and Trinec will stage the World Junior Championship in 2020 while the contest in other years will be spread across venues in Europe and the US.