Paris 2024 director general Etienne Thobois welcomed the certainty of weightlifting's place on the programme ©Getty Images

Paris 2024 has welcomed the certainty of weightlifting’s place on the programme for the Olympic Games, after its conditional status was lifted.

Weightlifting’s place had been conditional owing to concerns over the sport's doping record.

The International Olympic Committee Executive Board ruled last month that the sport would feature on the Paris 2024 programme, with conditional status lifted automatically when an updated agreement with the International Testing Agency was signed.

The initial agreement between the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) and the ITA was signed in November and it came into force in January.

It mainly focused on the IWF's out-of-competition testing but also included detailed risk assessment, test distribution planning and management, therapeutic use exemption management and support with regard to the IWF’s education initiatives.

The latest agreement, signed during SportAccord Summit last week, will see the ITA control in-competition testing, management of the IWF athlete biological passport programme and result management.

The long-term storage and re-analysis of samples will also be handled by the organisation.

With the conditional status lifted automatically, Paris 2024 director general Etienne Thobois welcomed the chance to plan with greater certainty.

“We are very much looking forward to having weightlifters join us in Paris in 2024,” Thobois said.

“We had already been planning on having great competitions for weightlifting, and the certainty of their place on the programme now allows us to plan more effectively, in just the same way as it allows weightlifters to train with the proper focus.”

The IWF have also welcomed the lifting of the conditional status and vowed to continue the “culture change” within the sport.

IWF director general Attila Adamfi believes the certainty over weightlifting’s place at Paris 2024 will be welcomed by athletes.

The conditional status was lifted after the IWF and ITA signed an updated agreement last week ©IWF
The conditional status was lifted after the IWF and ITA signed an updated agreement last week ©IWF

“Taken together, we are certain that the measures the IWF has put in place will contribute to sustained culture change for our sport,” he said.

“We are very happy that the latest steps the IWF has taken mean our athletes can train for an Olympic future with much greater certainty.”

The IOC Executive Board praised the "comprehensive work" carried out by the IWF in March.

This included the governing body establishing a qualification criteria for Tokyo 2020 punishing nations with multiple positive drugs tests by restricting the amount of athletes they can send to the Olympic Games.

The IOC Executive Board also admitted it had taken note of Thailand agreeing to ban itself from this year's IWF World Championships, which the country is still hosting, and next year's Olympic Games in Tokyo after eight of the nation's team at last year's event in Ashgabat, tested positive, including three women who won gold medals there.

The so-called "Tbilisi decision", where nine countries were suspended for a year by the IWF after having had three or more Olympic positives in the Beijing 2008 and London 2012 retests, was also highlighted as a success by the IOC.

A total of 55 weightlifters representing 12 countries have been banned following retests after these two Olympic Games.

"We’ve been working particularly closely with the IWF, specifically on the issue of clean sport and we’ve seen the IWF implementing concrete measures to ensure a sustainable change in favour of clean weightlifting,” said Kit McConnell, IOC sports director.

“Not least thanks to a newly-designed Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games qualification system, which links the number of quota available per country to their history of doping to explicitly reward clean sport.”

McConnell has previously warned, however, that they would continue to monitor the IWF's implementation of the conditions outlined for weightlifting to remain on the programme.