Spanish sports federations face hefty subsidy cuts
By Iain Rogers
MADRID (Reuters) - Spain's sports federations, already suffering due to a series of reductions in state subsidies, are facing a new round of hefty cuts forced on the government by the economic crisis, Secretary of State Miguel Cardenal said on Friday.
Many of the Iberian nation's smaller federations who found it hard to attract commercial sponsors relied heavily on public money and, with less cash available, performance and results were bound to be affected over the longer term, Cardenal said in an interview at his office in Madrid.
The 44-year-old, a specialist in labor, social security and sports law, was speaking to Reuters after a meeting with federation presidents on Thursday where he made plain the need to rein in spending.
"Subsidies have already seen a very significant reduction in recent years and this is affecting the activities of the federations," said Cardenal, appointed last year following the election victory of the center-right People's Party (PP).
"You don't notice the impact in the short term but if this economic situation continues for a prolonged amount of time it's very likely that you will see the effect in some areas," he added.
"We are going to change the criteria for distributing subsidies completely and in practically all cases there are going to be very big reductions."
Cardenal was reluctant to put a figure on the size of the cuts but said some federations could lose almost all their funding, while others might see a slight increase.
Spanish media have reported the reductions will amount to at least 40 percent of the total and Cardenal said "it could be around that amount or it could be less". Continued...