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Manama: The AFC and the Union of Arab Football Associations (UAFA) on Friday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to strengthen cooperation and dialogue between the two organisations in specific areas of common interest. UAFA is the governing body of football in the Arab League.

The agreement was signed by the presidents of the two organisations in Manama, Bahrain.

AFC President Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa said: “This Memorandum of Understanding, the first between the AFC and the UAFA, is great news for football in the region. The pooling of resources and expertise between the two organisations will benefit football at all levels in West Asia.”

UAFA President Prince Turki Khalid Bin Faisal Al Saud said: “UAFA is delighted to partner with the AFC to ensure we benefit from the latest information on developments at the international level. The agreement also means we have regular exchanges between the two organisations on several topics and we can inform the AFC on issues specific to our region.”

The main focus of the cooperation agreement is education through the exchange of knowledge, experience and resources. Through the MoU, the AFC and UAFA commit to promoting and establishing friendly relations of cooperation, both between themselves and among their Member Associations, serving the interest of football in their respective territories and complying with the Statutes of the AFC, CAF, UAFA and FIFA.

The Memorandum of Understanding is based on a set of shared values and principles between the two organisations:

Football is beneficial for the physical and mental health of both children and adults.

Football helps foster and promote fundamental educational and cultural values, such as fair play, team spirit and cooperation, self-control and respect for others.

Football contributes to social integration, cohesion and participation among Member Associations.

Football encourages peace and assists in developing tolerance and understanding.

Football possesses positive educational qualities that are important for the development of sport and society in general.

Football can significantly contribute to local development and the economy as a whole.