Astana: Amateur boxing organisation AIBA is to set up a professional programme to enhance its standing within the sport, AIBA President Wu Ching-Kuo said on Monday.
Encouraged by the first season`s success of the franchise-based World Series of Boxing (WSB), the executive committee had approved AIBA`s own professional boxing programme, he said.
"I am determined to launch professional boxing under the umbrella of AIBA so that we will be the true and respected leader of our sport, and not any other organisation," Wu said in a statement.
The AIBA will finalise the business plans this year and register the programme, called AIBA Professional Boxing (APB), and sign top boxers next year before rolling out the competitions in 2013.
"We will allow these APB boxers to compete in the Olympic Games with limited terms and conditions and we plan to make this dream come true from the Rio 2016 Olympic Games," Wu said.
Once APB was lunched, AIBA plans to abolish headguards in all elite men competitions.
"However, we decided to maintain headguards for Women, Youth and Junior categories," the statement added.