World Rowing received a CHF2.15 million loan form the IOC ©Getty Images

Swingeing cuts to event, development and marketing spending enabled World Rowing to report a surplus of almost CHF1 million (£790,000/$1.1 million/€920,000) in 2020, in spite of what President Jean-Christophe Rolland referred to as a "quasi-inexistent racing programme", except for Indoor Championships in February and the European Rowing Championships in October.

Newly-circulated accounts show that expenditures were slashed nearly in half, from CHF8.2 million (£6.5 million/$8.85 million/€7.6 million) in 2019 to just CHF4.4 million (£3.5 million/$4.75 million/€4 million).

Income dropped less steeply, from CHF7.9 million (£6.25 million/$8.5 million/€7.3 million) to CHF6.1 million (£4.8 million/$6.6 million/€5.6 million), of which CHF4.65 million (£3.7 million/$5 million/€4.3 million) was contributed from reserves.

Even so, total assets at year-end dropped only from CHF10.2 million (£8 million/$11 million/€9.4 million) to CHF8.4 million (£6.6 million/$9.1 million/€7.75 million), of which the vast majority - CHF7.3 million (£5.8 million/$7.9 million/€6.7 million) - consisted of cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments.

Rolland acknowledged that World Rowing was "indeed in a delicate position", but added that "things remain under control".

As explained in the accounts, World Rowing was able to obtain "short time compensation" from the Swiss Confederation amounting to just under CHF180,000 (£140,000/$195,000/€165,000) in 2020, to limit the impact on cash flow of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Indoor rowing has experienced a boom during the COVID-19 pandemic ©Getty Images
Indoor rowing has experienced a boom during the COVID-19 pandemic ©Getty Images

It also obtained loans of nearly CHF800,000 (£630,000/$865,000/€740,000) from the Swiss Confederation and CHF991,000 (£785,000/$1.1 million/€915,000) from the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

Treasurer Gerritjan Eggenkamp indicated that the loan granted by the IOC amounted to CHF2.15 million (£1.7 million/$2.3 million/€2 million) in total.

This disclosure means that the destination of over $23 million (£17 million/€20 million) in loans granted last year by the IOC to various Summer Olympic International Federations (IFs) has now been identified.

World Athletics has borrowed $7.5 million (£5.5 million/€6.4 million) - the biggest such loan to have come to light so far.

In addition, the International Swimming Federation is thought to have received $1 million (£730,000/€855,000), World Sailing $3.1 million (£2.25 million/€2.6 million), the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) around $1.5 million (£1.1 million/€1.3 million), the International Tennis Federation $3 million (£2.2 million/€2.55 million) and the International Cycling Union $5 million (£3.6 million/€4.2 million).

Sums loaned are to be docked from the amounts each individual IF is ultimately earmarked for the contribution of its sport to the postponed Tokyo 2020 Olympics.