Visas and bureaucracy, the great enemies of sports?

We are continually witnessing how some countries hinder the process of getting the visas needed to enter their nations to participate in the competitions they organize. ESPAÑOL

2014-01-18_73783x_CANADA-VISA_-e1390017400714A long list of documents, bank statements of account, credit cards, property titles, securities, and endless questionnaires to make sure the person who is applying the visa is not a terrorist…the athletes, who only want to compete must go through an odyssey before they get the visa.

Some international federations provide assistance to their athletes in order to get the documentation needed; others also pay the visa fee for them, as this is sometimes very expensive.  However, there are international federations that do not provide any assistance, and the athletes themselves must get things done (get the documentation and pay the visa fee), with the logical risk that the visa may not be granted and therefore they lose time and money, since the cost of the visa is not reimbursed if it is denied.

Within a few days, on February 13-16, the 2014 Canada Open, an event ranked as G-2, will be held in Montreal, has received countless of complaints arguing the difficulty to obtain a visa to enter Canada to do what athletes love, compete, and just get back home.

This year, Canada will host the Senior Pan American Taekwondo Championships and it has been speculated that the date stated in the official schedule is not final.  This kind of inconsistencies makes much more complicated the planning  of trips because in addition to the difficult task of getting a visa to step on Canadian ground, we must add the uncertainty of the date on which the competition will be held.

We talked about Canada, because the event is close, but it is well known how difficult it is for many countries to get a visa to enter the United States, the countless bureaucratic process to enter Thailand, Russia, Peru, or Argentina, among others.

What is what the WTF is striving to promote and develop?  Globalization and Taekwondo for all, with no borders, regardless of race or religion.

We wonder why they give the organization of events like the Pan-American Championships to countries that do not provide easy processes to get the respective visa.

How do they analyze the different proposals?

Do they think in the large amount of competitors that are excluded in a discriminatory way just due to the country they choose?

In the specific case of the American continent, would it be possible to change the host cities and hold the competition in countries that make easy the process of getting visas?  And, in such way start to comply the WTF premise of “Taekwondo for all”.

There are a lot of questions, and we think someone must start ask them.




Exclusive Team

3 thoughts on “Visas and bureaucracy, the great enemies of sports?”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *