The End of the Year Message from IBAF President Riccardo Fraccari
The accomplishments of 2012 were a success because of the joint efforts of many. The challenges of 2013 will require full cooperation from everyone

Lausanne, December 30, 2012

To: National Federations
Dear friends and colleagues:
The 2012 year is coming to a close, and with the end of the year, I feel it’s opportune to evaluate what was accomplished in 2012, and perhaps more importantly, to understand and identify what needs to be done in 2013.
This past year was definitely a year full of activities and undertakings. We addressed the organization of the Under-15 World Championship in Mexico, which saw a large number of participants; there was the Under-18 World Championship in Korea, which showed a high skill-level among all the participating teams and had excellent TV coverage across various countries; we had another big success in staging the Women’s World Cup in Canada, which was a testament to how quickly the women’s movement is developing, both in terms of quality and quantity.
To the 2012 host-countries and organizers, all of whom worked very well and with professionalism, goes our deepest thanks and appreciation.
Our many talks and meetings with the ISF brought the Softball Congress to vote for the creation of a new international federation, the World Baseball Softball Confederation. And we know that Baseball NFs expressed a unanimous agreement about the union with the softball. This historic decision is certainly an important step towards the reintegration of baseball and softball in the Olympic program, as well as for the further development of these two disciplines. We are currently working on the preparation of the constitution of this new federation, so that it can then be analyzed and voted upon by the individual conferences.
On 19 December, representatives of the new international federation presented to the IOC Programme Commission, and we, along with softball, put forward our candidacy for inclusion on the Olympic program. The presentation was undoubtedly positive, but there is still a long road ahead of us and we have many things to address, and these final months will require the cooperation of each of you, and a detailed and high-importance communication in this regard will be distributed in the coming days, so I ask you to please expect it and give it your full attention.
In May ’13, we will again present our case for baseball and softball’s inclusion on the Olympic program, but this time we will present to the IOC Executive Board. In September, the Session will decide which shortlisted sport to include on the 2020 Olympic Programme. The months ahead will be very challenging and will absolutely need to give our full efforts. Again, I repeat, your cooperation will be crucial.
During the past year, we also made efforts to improve our official website, and in 2013 we will activate many other sections dedicated to umpires, scorers and women’s baseball. We definitely need to improve the exchange of information from the NFs, some of whom do not respond to our requests/surveys. There needs to be far better attention given on this aspect and to understand that a closer link with the International Federation and constantly circulating the information of the activities carried out in different countries not only demonstrates the vitality and strength of our movement, but provides more visibility and recognition to your federation. The same applies to the continental confederations for which we are working on a project that makes it more consistent, visible and shows the activity of work performed by each continent.
In 2012, the IBAF Executive Committee came together twice, once in Taiwan and once via videoconference, which helped us cut costs and modernize our institution.
There is no doubt that 2013 will be an extremely challenging year. Awaiting us is the organization of the 12U- and 18U World Cups, and the World Baseball Classic in cooperation with MLB.
We must move forward with establishing the new structure of the IBAF and on 14 April the XXVII IBAF Ordinary Congress will be held in Tokyo and will see the election of the new Executive Committee. All necessary communications in this regard will be distributed.
Thank you for your attention and for your contribution in making 2012 a very productive year that saw several distinguished accomplishments.
And on behalf of the IBAF Executive Committee, the entire IBAF staff, and in my name personally, I wish each and every one of you a 2013 full of success.

My very best regards,

Riccardo Fraccari
IBAF President

(From IBAF Website)