The event will bring the most talented short-course swimmers in the world to the capital’s iconic sporting destination – Yas Island.

One of the first international sporting events to be held at Yas Island’s Etihad Arena, the Championships will run from 16-21 December 2021.

To coincide with the announcement, the official FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) brand logo has also been revealed.

The FINA World Aquatics Convention will also be hosted on Yas Island in parallel, promising a swimming extravaganza in the capital.

Abu Dhabi: Abu Dhabi Sports Council (ADSC) announced the capital city is to host the 15th FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) in December for the first time in history and, in an exciting development, with less than eight months to go until the best short-course swimmers from across the globe descend on the country for what promises to be a spectacular occasion, the official brand logo has now been revealed.

Made up of 44 different swimming events, the FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) will be held at the state-of-the-art Etihad Arena – the UAE’s largest multi-purpose indoor entertainment venue, which opened in 2021 and is located on Yas Island.

The official brand logo for the Championships, which celebrates Abu Dhabi’s pearl diving heritage, has also been revealed to mark the announcement of the event.

Taking place from Thursday 16 – Tuesday 21 December 2021, the FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) will showcase the very best in aquatic talent, providing both local and international fans with the opportunity to watch top-quality competitive swimming action in the heart of Abu Dhabi. Originally scheduled for 2020, the FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) will feature men’s and women’s events in all four strokes – freestyle, breaststroke, backstroke, and butterfly – along with the individual medley and relays.

His Excellency Aref Al Awani, General Secretary of Abu Dhabi Sports Council, said: “We are absolutely delighted to bring the FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) to Abu Dhabi later this year.

“This is set to be a huge event for Yas Island, Abu Dhabi and the UAE, with over 1,000 of the most talented short-course swimmers from around the world, fresh from the Olympic Games in Tokyo, showcasing their abilities in what we expect to be an exciting competition.

“This World Championship event will further strengthen the emirate’s unique sporting offering, enhancing its reputation as a top global destination for sport, entertainment, leisure and business.

“Abu Dhabi continues to showcase its ability to host largescale events while ensuring the safety of everybody in attendance in the land of tolerance and peace.

“The wise leadership of our country and their generous support for the development of the sports sector has always been overwhelming in the land of tolerance and peace.

“Abu Dhabi has also worked relentlessly to bring life to normalcy from the prevailing pandemic through large vaccination campaigns exceeding 9 million doses to combat the re-emerging new waves of the Covid-19 cases.

“The FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) is the latest addition to an ever-growing list of major sporting events to be hosted in Abu Dhabi recently, including UFC, the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship, Formula 1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, the UAE Tour and the Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship.

“The Championships will be hosted in parallel with the FINA World Aquatics Convention, yet another important event on the global calendar, which will also take place on Yas Island.”

Julio C. Maglione, President of the Federation Internationale De Natation (FINA), added: “The FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) will be a highlight of the 2021 sporting calendar, and we are thrilled to be able to bring the event to Abu Dhabi, one of the world’s fastest-growing sporting hubs.

“Having previously staged events such as the FINA High Diving World Cup and FINA Open Water Swim World Cup in Abu Dhabi, we know there is a huge appetite for top-quality sporting action among the local community. We are extremely proud to give fans in Abu Dhabi and the UAE another major event to look forward to at the end of a big year for sport.”

Mohamed Abdulla Al Zaabi, CEO of Miral, added: “We are extremely excited to host the FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) at Etihad Arena in December, and look forward to building our partnership with FINA in the years to come. This event, along with the FINA World Aquatics Convention, builds on Yas Island’s track record in hosting International sporting events of such caliber. As we expect over 13,000 hotel room night bookings, this event is yet another testament to Yas Island’s position as a top global destination for entertainment, leisure and business.”

“We have a great partnership with the Abu Dhabi Sports Council, bringing world-class and community sporting events to Yas Island, aiming to develop the flourishing sporting culture in Abu Dhabi”

Sultan Al Samahi, President of UAE Swimming Federation added, “Hosting events such as the FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) plays a pivotal role in the progression and development of swimming across the UAE. We look forward to working with FINA and the LOC to ensure that this event creates a positive impact on our local athletes over the coming months, and hope that the whole country is ready to cheer on the Emirati athletes who will line up against the world’s best in December.”

To coincide with the announcement of the event, the official FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) brand logo, which symbolizes the past and present, has today been revealed.

Inspired by Abu Dhabi’s pearl diving heritage, the logo features a swimmer constructed from pearls who is powering through the water, which is representative of both the city’s proud history and the competitive nature of the tournament itself.

The main FINA events, in conjunction with television partners, are broadcast in over 211 territories, reaching a huge global audience.

Tasked with overseeing the development of many aquatic disciplines, including swimming, diving, and water polo, FINA celebrated its 100-year anniversary in 2018.

The inaugural FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) welcomed 313 swimmers from 46 countries, and such has been the evolution of the event, when China hosted the most recent edition in 2018, there were 951 competitors from 178 national federations.

Qualifying events for the FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) will take place in Africa, America, Asia, Europe, and Oceania over the coming months, giving short-course swimmers around the world a chance to secure their spot at  the Abu Dhabi competition.

With the FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) taking place a matter of months after the Tokyo Olympics, the event represents a fantastic opportunity to potentially see some of the Games’ biggest stars go head-to-head right in the heart of Abu Dhabi.

The event, however, is not just for swimming fans, with the “Market Street” set to feature fantastic entertainment and a host of family-friendly activities, along with cultural learning experiences and delicious food and beverage outlets for everybody to enjoy.

Both Dubai and Doha have previously staged the competition, in 2010 and 2014 respectively, while other host cities include Rio de Janeiro (1995), Indianapolis (2004), Manchester (2008) and Istanbul (2012).

About Abu Dhabi Sports Council:

Abu Dhabi Sports Council (ADSC) was established in 2006 by His Highness Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.

ADSC is aligned to the emirate’s leadership vision to develop sport and youth activities. The Council promotes an effective, emirate-wide sports calendar that stimulates the desire to participate in quality sports among all Abu Dhabi residents and helps the talented and motivated reach their sporting potential.

The Council also hosts and supports the staging of international world-class sporting events, including the annual Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship, the Formula 1TM Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, the ITU World Triathlon Series, the Abu Dhabi Invitational, the Gary Player Invitational, the FIBA 3×3 World Tour Final, the Red Bull Air Race, the hosting of the Volvo Ocean Race round-the-world sailing epic, the Abu Dhabi Cycling Tour and the 2015 Nomura Cup.

We at ADSC firmly believe that sporting events deliver a host of benefits for the emirate and its residents. These span improved health and wellness, the building of community spirit, the discovering of local talent and the delivery of international exposure of the emirate as a world-class sporting events hub.

Whether it is land, sea or air, we have sport covered.


The Fédération Internationale de Natation (FINA), founded in 1908, is the governing body for aquatics worldwide. FINA’s five disciplines – Swimming, Open Water Swimming, Diving, Water Polo and Artistic Swimming – are all included in the Olympic programme. High Diving made its first appearance in FINA events at the 2013 FINA World Championships. FINA counts 209 affiliated National Federations across five continents and its headquarters are based in Lausanne (SUI).

FINA has partnered with world-wide brands over the years which strengthen the value around the FINA World Swimming Championships (25m). A magnificent event distributed to over 200 territories globally, welcoming the participation of approximately 950 athletes from over 175 countries, competing in 46 events over a 6-day format. This world-class competition is complemented by the FINA World Aquatics Convention which brings together the aquatic’s community in a unique B2B experience.