United Arab Emirates is one of the newest members of the International Canoe Federation, but it is already making huge steps forward.

The Emirates Canoe and Rowing Federation has already had its first athlete compete at the ICF U23 Canoe Sprint World Championships in Szeged earlier this year, and this week will have two athletes competing in the ICF Ocean Racing World Championships in Portugal.

UAE has also sent four athletes to this week’s International Nile Regatta in Cairo, and has also registered six applicants for the ICF level three coaching course starting this month.

ICF President Thomas Konietzko said it is exciting to see the efforts being made to grow canoe sport in a new region.

“It is hard to believe the ECRF has been a recognised ICF Federation for less than one year, but is already making such important progress,” Mr Konietzko said.

“We are really impressed with the passion and the vision this new federation has. I will be visiting the UAE with our new Secretary General, Richard Pettit, next month, and will talk about efforts we can make together to ensure canoe sports continue to grow in this important region.

“It shows how a young federation can work to make fast and positive inroads into developing paddle sports in their region. We congratulate everyone involved with the ECRF.”

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