Oman and Mongolia have become members of the International Surfing Association (ISA), increasing to 106 nations the body’s membership figure.
In a statement, the ISA said the addition of the Oman Surfing Association and Mongolian Surfing Federation highlighted its “continued strategy to grow the sport of surfing” in all disciplines.
The ISA added it was particularly focused on growing the sport in Asia, ahead of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games where surfing will make its debut as an Olympic sport.
“The Oman Surfing Association has made big steps in the development of surfing in the country, holding its first surf contest in August 2018,” the ISA said.
“The Association has established goals to further grow the sport, including gaining recognition from the Ministry of Sport, creating a membership programme for Omani surfers, promoting the country as a surfing destination and addressing environmental issues surrounding the country's coastline.”
Mongolia, meanwhile, has become a member of the ISA despite not having direct access to the sea.
“ISA membership will create a platform to cater to disciplines that can be practised on flat water, such as stand up paddle, or indoors with wave pool technology,” the ISA added.
“With recognition from the Mongolian National Olympic Committee and ISA membership approval, the Mongolian Surfing Federation aims to organise indoor competitions, set up a network of clubs throughout the country, collaborate with other member nations in Asia, encourage instructors to obtain ISA instructor certification and promote the sport on a national level through a media campaign.”
ISA President Fernando Aguerre said the body was “excited” to welcome the two countries as members.
"The growth of surfing in non-traditional surfing nations is testimony to how surfing's Olympic inclusion has expanded the sport to new corners of the globe,” he said.
“Surfers that thought the Games were far out of reach, now have a dream they can pursue.”