The International Boxing Association (Aiba) has reassigned hosting rights for its 2021 men’s World Championships to the Serbian capital of Belgrade after New Delhi did not fulfil its obligations to pay the hosting fee for the event.
As a result, Aiba said that India would need to pay a $500,000 (€460,000) cancellation penalty for failing to adhere to the terms of the host city agreement. Aiba has terminated the contract and announced that Belgrade will now host the event instead.
New Delhi was awarded hosting rights to next year’s men’s World Championships back in July 2017. The city also hosted the 2018 women’s World Championships.
The dates of Belgrade’s event will be announced in due course, with Aiba needing to take into account the rescheduled Tokyo Olympic Games.
Aiba interim president Mohamed Moustahsane said: “It’s a big step toward our new competition system and also the financial stability of our organisation, which is going to be less and less dependent on the Olympic money.
“Because of the rescheduling of the 2020 Olympics, the Aiba Executive Committee will discuss with the host country possible dates to adjust. We believe that we will keep the planned timeframe and conduct the World Championships in 2021 after the Games if the pandemic situation is under control. As soon as it is fixed, this will help our boxers to plan preparation for next year properly.”
Belgrade hosted the World Championships back in 1978, when it was the capital of Yugoslavia.
Aiba has been suspended by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) since last June over financial and governance issues. Boxing events at the Tokyo Games will be organised by the IOC Boxing Task Force as a result.
Last year’s World Boxing Championships were held in Yekaterinburg, Russia.