President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. has issued an administrative order (AO) creating an inter-agency task force to prepare for the country’s hosting of the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023.

AO 05, signed by Marcos on March 27, creates an inter-agency task force in charge of “streamlining, integrating, harmonizing, and coordinating all government efforts with the plans and programs of the SBP (Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas) and its Local Organizing Committee, towards the effective preparation and successful participation of all delegates in the FIBA World Cup 2023.”

“The successful organization and hosting of the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 requires the involvement, coordination, and support of all concerned government agencies, local government units (LGUs), and the private sector,” the AO read.

The inter-agency task force will be led by the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) chairperson.

Heads or designated representatives of the departments of foreign affairs, health, the interior and local government, public works, tourism, and transportation; the bureaus of customs and immigration; the Philippine National Police; and the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority will serve as members of the task force.

“All heads of departments, bureaus, offices, agencies, or instrumentalities of the government, including government-owned or -controlled corporations, and state universities and colleges are hereby directed to extend full support and assistance, consistent with their respective mandates, to the PSC and SBP in the preparatory activities for the Philippines’ hosting of the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 including, among others, the procurement of the necessary materials and equipment, provision of support services, and acceptance of donations, in accordance with existing laws, rules, and regulations,” the AO read.

“LGUs, non-government organizations, and the private sector are hereby encouraged to lend their cooperation and support to ensure the successful conduct of the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023,” it added.

Funds necessary for the implementation of the AO will be charged against available appropriations of the agencies concerned, subject to existing budgeting, accounting, and auditing laws, rules, and regulations.

The FIBA Basketball World Cup is a quadrennial men’s basketball tournament organized by the FIBA or the Fédération Internationale de Basketball, the world governing body for basketball recognized by the International Olympic Committee.

On June 1, 2017, the FIBA awarded the principal co-hosting rights to the SBP and tasked it to be responsible for the preparation, organization, management, and promotion of the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023.

The PSC first proposed an inter-agency task force to work alongside the local organizing committee in September last year.

The FIBA World Cup will return to the Philippines after 45 years.

The group phase will be played simultaneously in the Philippines, Indonesia, and Japan from Aug. 25 to 30, with the games in the Philippines to be held at the Smart Araneta Coliseum and SM Mall of Asia Arena.

The finals, scheduled from Sept. 5 to 10, will be at the 55,000-seater Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan. (PNA)