Four countries have officially joined the World Curling Federation (WCF) ranks.
The WCF has confirmed that Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan, Portugal and Saudi Arabia have all been accepted for conditional membership.
It means that the total number of Member Associations represented by the WCF has now risen to 60.
The new countries joined up at the WCF Congress in Bled in Slovenia last week.
A number of other decisions were made, including expanding the World Championships for men and women to 13 teams from 12.
This will include a six team play-off, with the changes coming into force in the 2017-2018 season.
The World Wheelchair Curling Championships will feature two more teams, rising to 12 from 10.
In addition, the WCF also announced a brand new World Series of Curling competition.
The four-leg event will begin in the 2018-2019 season.