The EU Work Plan for Sport identifies the economic aspects of sport, in particular sustainable financing of grassroots sport, as a priority for the EU. The Commission seeks to put the public and private financing of sport on a more secure footing, focussing on three main aspects:
Sporting organisations, especially at grassroots level, find themselves in a complex and changeable financial situation. While some sport organisations are economically self-sufficient, for most of them public support remains essential. This presents a number of opportunities and challenges for local sporting organisations.
In its 2007 White Paper on Sport, the Commission included a study on the financing of grassroots sport and sport for all in the Member States.
A 2011 Communication on sport addressed the redistribution of revenue derived from professional sports to lower levels of the sport chain.
The informal EU Working Group on Non-Profit Sport Organisations met six times between February 2007 and January 2011. The group addressed a number of topical issues relating to the financing of grassroots sport, including gambling services, State Aid, VAT and procurement.
An EU Expert Group on Sustainable Financing of Sport was set up by the Council in 2011, tasked with exploring ways to strengthen financial solidarity mechanisms within sport
The Preparatory Actions in the field of sport 2009-2013 contributed to the exchange of good practices in sport, particularly at grassroots level.
The planned Erasmus+ programme will also, from 2014, contribute to the exchange of good practices in sport, particularly at grassroots level.