FIFA revenues pass billion-dollar mark

ZURICH - World football governing body FIFA's annual income passed the $1 billion mark for the first time last year and president Sepp Blatter said the money would be used to develop the sport around the world.

"We don't want to have the money here," Blatter told reporters on Friday. "We do not give it back to the rich, we give it to those who don't have it.

"We don't make the rich richer; we help those who have less."

Blatter said that FIFA's finances had attracted less attention as they had improved over the years.

"We are in a very good situation so it's not so interesting any more. Despite the last year feeling the effects of the financial crisis which started in 2008, we are comfortable, but I wouldn't say we are rich."

FIFA said its expenditure for the year was $863 million, leaving a surplus of $196 million.

Blatter said one of FIFA's first moves would be to distribute $200,000 to each of the 208 national federations. Chile and Haiti, both struck by big earthquakes this year, would get extra money, he said.

In addition, he said, smaller nations would continue to get regular help through FIFA's development project known as Goal.

FIFA's finance chief Markus Kattner said the budget for 2011-2014 envisaged a total revenue of $3.8 billion and expenditure of $3.6 billion.

He said 74 percent of expenditure would be spent on football development projects and the organisation of FIFA competitions.

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