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Russia One Of WADA's Biggest Financial Backers


Vyacheslav Fetisov

Vyacheslav Fetisov

Hockey legend and current member of upper house of parliament

“Russia is one of the largest financial contributors” to the World Anti-Doping Association (WADA), giving “$700,000-$800,000, or something like that.”

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...figures back up claim

Fetisov made the statement in an interview with the pro-Kremlin outlet Life.ru published on August 18.

It followed comments earlier in the day from Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko that Moscow might halt its payments to WADA, which commissioned the investigation that led to dozens of the country’s athletes being banned from the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio. That investigation, led by Canadian lawyer Richard McLaren, detailed damning accusations of systemic, state-sponsored doping in Russia

Russia is indeed among the top contributors of funds to WADA, which receives half of its financing from governments of the world and half from the Olympic Movement. It was among the top six government contributors to WADA in 2016, paying $772,326 into the Montreal-based organization’s $26-million budget – the same amount as Germany and the U.K. Moscow contributed similar amounts to WADA in previous years as well. The United States, Japan, and Canada are the largest contributors, with payments in 2016 of $2.05 million, $1.5 million, and $1.03 million, respectively. The required contributions by governments are determined differently in the five Olympic regions.

The blanket ban (with one exemption) on Russia’s track-and-field athletes from competing in Rio and tightened anti-doping requirements for its athletes in other disciplines have stirred outrage among Russian officials and fans, who say clean athletes are being punished for the misdeeds of a few bad actors.

Mutko was quoted by as saying on August 18 that he sees “no point” in continuing to make payments to WADA unless the organization reverses its November 2015 decision to declare the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) noncompliant with the World Anti-Doping Code. In his interview with Life.ru, Fetisov appeared to criticize Mutko, saying he didn’t know “what this minister has stirred up…. Confrontation in this situation will lead us down the wrong path.”

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