Moscow, 27 February 2001

Statement from the FIDE President regarding the new time control and use of Continental Championships for qualification to the World Chess Championships

Dear friends,

It has become necessary to address you in the face of the controversy generated by the Presidential Board's decision to introduce the new time control for all FIDE events and title tournaments from an average of six hours to four hours for the playing session.  

After reflection and consultations, I shall recommend to the next meeting of the Board in Cannes next month, to review its decision after hearing from all interested parties.

I can see that some Federations are not yet prepared to accept the inevitable changes that our sport must undergo, if it is to move with the other sports of the modern era. Some Federations have stated that the Presidential Board's action in respect of the time control should have been limited to the World Championships, and not all FIDE events and title tournaments. Therefore, I shall in the FIDE spirit, propose a further compromise solution. I shall recommend to the Presidential Board to accept the new time control as currently approved for the World Championships and to make it recommendatory for other FIDE events and title tournaments, subject to further review at our next Congress in September.

Regarding the use of the Continental Championships as basis for qualification for the World Championship, I have requested Deputy President Georgios Makropoulos to meet with the Continental Presidents, one day before the Board's meeting in Cannes to put in place the right strategic plan to realise our commercial objectives.

Gens Una Sumus

Kirsan Ilyumzhinov


Editor's comment:  Although not immediately mandating the use of the "new FIDE time control" of 40/75, SD/15 with a 30 second increment for all title norm events (as FIDE announced in December but has since retreated from), this statement appears to be a step back in that direction.  FIDE's Executive Director, Emmanuel Omuku, had previously stated (see our post of 2/1) that the "new time control" was only an additional option for organizers and was never intended to be manditory.  Now Omuku's boss, the FIDE President, makes it clear that this control was indeed intended to be required, and that while he no longer supports immediate enforcement as "some Federations are not yet prepared to accept the inevitable changes," it will be recommended for now, and quite possibly he will push to have it mandated as early as the FIDE Congress in September. homepage