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The International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) is the worldwide governing body for ice hockey and in-line hockey. Founded in 1908 in Paris as the Ligue Internationale de hockey sur glace par Louis Magnus, it is based in Zurich, Switzerland and counts 65 members.

It is, additionally to its governing functions, responsible for arranging 12 international competitions and maintain the IIHF World Ranking.

Its president is former Swiss player René Fasel.

The federation celebrates its centennial in 2008.

Past IIHF presidents

IIHF headquarters in Zürich.


The main functions of the IIHF are to govern, develop and organize hockey throughout the world. Also to promote friendly relations among the member national associations and to operate in an organized manner for the good order of the sport. [1] The federation may take the necessary measures in order to conduct itself and its affairs in accordance with its statutes, bylaws and regulations as well as in holding a clear jurisdiction in what concerns to ice hockey and in-line hockey at the international level. The IIHF is the body responsible with arranging the sponsorships, license rights, advertising and merchandising in connection with all IIHF competitions.

Another purpose of the federation is to provide aid in the young players' development and in the development of coaches and game officials. On the other hand, all the events of IIHF are organized by the federation along with establishing and maintaining contact with any other sport federations or sport groups. The IIHF is responsible for processing the international players' transfers. It is also the body that presides over ice hockey in the Olympic Games as well as over all levels of the IIHF World Championships. [2] The federation works in collaboration with local committees when organizing its 25 World Championships, at five different categories.

Even though the IIHF runs the world championships, it is also responsible for the organization of several European club competitions such as the Champions Hockey League or the Continental Cup. With its 100 anniversary, the federation launched a new annual club competition in 2008, the Victoria Cup, named after the Montreal Victoria Skating Rink, the site of the first organized indoor ice hockey match.[3] The federation is governed by the legislative body of the IIHF which is the General Congress along with the executive body, which is the Council. The Congress is entitled to make decisions with regard of the game's rules, the statutes and bylaws in the name of the federation. It is also the body that elects the president and the council or otherwise known as board. [4] The president of the IIHF is basically the representative of the federation. He represents the federation's interests I all external matters and he is also responsible that the decisions are made according to the federation's statues and regulations. The president is assisted by the General Secretary who is also the highest ranked employee of the IIHF.


The International Ice Hockey Federation was founded on May 15, 1908 at 34 Rue de Provence in Paris, France, as Ligue International de Hockey sur Glace (LIHG). [5] The founders of the federation were representatives from Belgium, France, Great Britain, Switzerland and Bohemia (now Czech republic). Louis Magnus, the French representative, was the fifth member to sign the founding document and also the first president of the LIGH. A year later, the first congress was held in Paris and then another one during the same year in Chamonix, France.

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