The International Canoe Federation is excited to announce a new strategic partnership with the world’s leading electric car manufacturer BYD. 

ICF President Thomas Konietzko and Secretary General Richard Pettit signed the cooperation agreement at a special ceremony at the headquarters of BYD in Shenzhen, China. 

Both parties will work together to promote Dragon Boat in global competitions and advocate for sustainability, clean water and environmental protection initiatives. 

“The signing of this new strategic partnership with BYD is a significant moment in our drive to develop paddle sports across the world and deliver our sustainability objectives,” said Mr Konietzko. 

“With the support of BYD, we will raise the profile of Dragon Boat internationally ahead of its inclusion at the 2025 World Games in Chengdu, China.  

"Two partners have come together here that share the same vision of making the world more climate neutral. 

“As the leading manufacturer of electric cars in the world, BYD is fully committed to reducing carbon emissions and will assist the ICF in delivering environmental initiatives as a sustainability partner.” 

ICF BYD strategic partnership canoe kayak

Dragon Boat originated in China but has become a global sport with tens of millions of enthusiasts participating in more than 85 countries and regions across the world.

It is one of the ICF’s 10 disciplines, with the federation organising World Championships and World Cups every year. 

The ICF has agreed to recognise BYD as the Dragon Boat Race Global Strategic Partner. 

With the joint efforts of the ICF, BYD and the Chinese Canoe Association (CCA), Dragon Boat will be showcased during Paris 2024. 

BYD is supplying three dragon boats that will be used during the intervals of the Canoe Sprint finals as part of the sports presentation from August 8 and 10. 

It will be the second successive Games where Dragon Boat has been exhibited after featuring in Tokyo. 

As well as enhancing the status of Dragon Boat globally, the ICF and BYD will work together on initiatives aimed at promoting sustainability, clean water and environmental protection. 

Under the agreement, BYD is committed to utilising its expertise and recourses to bolster environmental initiatives within the paddling community including deploying electric vehicles and adopting renewable energy solutions. 

ICF President Thomas Konietzko BYD meeting China

Li Yunfei, General Manager of BYD Brand and PR, said: "Since partnering with the CCA in 2020, BYD has not only integrated innovative technology into the development of competitive dragon boats but also helped popularize the sport by organising events for car owners and media, promoting the Tokyo Dragon Boat exhibition race, and participating in the Dragon Boat World Cup.  

“As a company rooted in China and oriented towards the world, BYD’s new energy vehicles are now present in over 400 cities across 88 countries and regions.  

“In the future, BYD will leverage its global brand influence, collaborating closely with the ICF and CCA, to advance Chinese Dragon Boat sports with technology, promoting Chinese traditional sports culture worldwide." 

Zhang Yin, Secretary General of the CCA, added: "After over two thousand years of development, Dragon Boat has successfully become an increasingly international competitive sport.  

“The CCA closely collaborates with the ICF to support the global growth of Dragon Boat.  

“The internationalisation of traditional Chinese sports relies on the support of Chinese enterprises.  

"The CCA will continue to work with BYD in various areas, including the promotion of Dragon Boat and the organisation of the ICF Dragon Boat events."

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