For the first time, Kosovo has enacted an Anti-Doping Law, which is a positive development for the sports community of Kosovo as it establishes an agency that has been sorely needed.
Through this law, the establishment, organization, and delineation of competences of the Anti-Doping Agency (hereinafter referred to as the Agency) are defined, along with fundamental rules and mechanisms aimed at combating the use of substances and methods of doping in sports. The primary goal is to protect the health of athletes and ensure fairness and equal opportunities in sports competitions.
Through this law, the Agency will be responsible for monitoring the implementation of anti-doping rules. The Agency will manage national-level sample collection and anti-doping test result management.
Additionally, besides enforcing this law, the Agency will ensure the implementation of the World Anti-Doping Code in the Republic of Kosovo.
The Agency will have the authority to propose National Anti-Doping Rules, which will be approved by the Ministry of Sports and will be binding for all sports organizations, athletes, and individuals involved in sports or doping control in Kosovo. The Agency is also entitled to contract individuals or entities within and outside the country in accordance with applicable laws to carry out its anti-doping activities.
The Agency will identify any possible violations of anti-doping rules and, if there are suspicions of potential criminal activities, it will provide all collected data and information to the State Prosecutor’s Office. The Agency will collaborate with other relevant entities.
The Agency will be led by its director, while its structure and organization will be regulated by separate subordinate legislation.
Regarding funding, the Agency will be financed from the budget of the Republic of Kosovo, its own revenues, as well as donations and other alternative sources, in accordance with existing laws. The Agency will manage its finances independently.
Within the framework of the Agency, two permanent commissions will function:
- Commission on Therapeutic Use Exemption Commission; and
- The Disciplinary Commission.
In case of violations of anti-doping rules and breaches of measures set forth by this law and the World Anti-Doping Code, the following actions may be taken:
- Disqualification of sports results;
- Temporary suspension;
- Prohibition from participating in competitions;
- Financial consequences; and
- Public disclosure.
Individuals and teams in team sports may be subject not only to the consequences specified in the Code and National Anti-Doping Rules but also to additional measures, including:
- Prohibition of involvement in sports activities;
- Financial penalties: ranging from five hundred (500) to one thousand five hundred (1500) euros for individuals and from ten thousand (10,000) to thirty thousand (30,000) euros for legal entities; and
- Other measures stipulated in the sports regulations of relevant national and international federations.
Parties, dissatisfied with decisions made by the Disciplinary Commission have the right to appeal to the Kosovar Council of Sport Arbitration.
Recognizing the need for Kosovar athletes to be informed about anti-doping rules, we consider that the Agency will play a highly positive role in this aspect. Athletes and clubs will have the opportunity to stay informed about existing and updated rules through informative materials, training sessions, and media presentations by the Agency. This will enable them to be well-prepared for local and international competitions, eliminating practices that could lead to disqualification.