The Spanish League ACB has released the following statement, after the ABP (Players’ Union) decision to call an indefinite strike starting this Sunday, May 26.

1. The ACB reiterates once again its total will to reach an agreement with the Union on the new CBA. The Association is open to resume the negotiations with representatives of the ABP in order to achieve a regulatory framework that satisfies all parties and ensures the future of the competition.

2. The ACB believes in consensus and dialogue as the fundamental basis of negotiations between clubs and players. In this context, it is fair to remember that ACB clubs accepted most of the proposals raised in the past by the ABP and went even beyond on others proposals that were not ABP’s but which substantially improved the working conditions of the players, taking shape in the following:

– Coverage for all players participating in the competition, without discrimination based on nationality. That is, the scope of the agreement for everyone. ACB-proposed

– Four seasons in force of the new Convention and one year extension if there is no renewal agreement between the parties. ACB-proposed

– Increase the capital of the life insurance policy, from 75,000 to 100,000 euros (33% increase). ACB-proposed

– Increase the contribution of clubs to assistance fund (special contribution intended for affiliated players in situations of need) from 180 euros to 400 euros per person (122% increase). ACB-proposed

– Raise the minimum wage for all age ranges in the CPI plus one point for next season 2013-14. ACB-proposed

– Increase the Special Wage Guarantee Fund (ACB contribution to cover possible unpaid wages, being the ACB the only European Basketball League that guarantees) from 270,000 to 350,000 euros (up 33%) for the total limit for club and from 900,000 to 1,200,000 euros in total of the Fund (up 30%).

– Establish an emergency procedure if the delay in payment is 3 or more salaries.

– Improving economic conditions in the case of renewal of the players who do not receive offers from clubs, proposing a 18% increase (from current 65% to 75% of final salary) contract renewal.

– Accept the three proposals submitted by the ABP on the right of first refusal. 1) Halve the time to execute the right of first refusal. 2) To limit this right to the clubs who owes 30% or more of the player’s contract. And 3) Loss of right of first refusal if the club and player mutually agreed rescind the contract or unilateral termination occurs by the player, upon payment of the clause, if any.

3. The ACB is open to discuss other matters of the agreement, including new proposals made by the ABP, but marking as a limit in this negotiation an adjustment of the Union to the overall current recession and crisis situation, especially on the subject of funding for the maintenance of the Union, amounting to 475,000 euros per season. During the term of the agreement this amount has raised to figure close to 10 million euros. This annual allocation to the Union must be reviewed by both parties under the current economic context.

4. The ACB respects the constitutional right to strike but is confident that the Union response is the resumption of negotiation on the Convention rather than the interruption or stoppage of the activity, which should always be the last option in a process like this and that causes irreparable damage to the competition.

5. The ACB has requested the mediaation of the Secretary of State for Sport, Miguel Cardenal, with the aim that, with his help and with the cooperation of clubs and players, a definitive agreement is reached on the new CBA for the coming years.

Source: ULEB