The Head of FIDE Comments on Carlsen’s Announcement

I would like to thank Magnus and pay tribute to his courage: he was the first of the champions to offer to limit his privileges.
I first proposed the World Championship knockout system 20 years ago to the FIDE Presidential Board in Singapore.  We wanted to make chess more democratic, a sport for the masses, where every athlete would have a good chance of becoming the World Champion.  The first tournament under this system, with a prize fund of $5 million, took place in Groningen, December 1997, and the finals at the Olympic Museum in Lausanne, January 1998.

This system has proved to be dynamic and appealing to both the organizers and sponsors.  But as you know, the chess world is very conservative. Many did not accept the change, considering that it was largely fortuitous. As it stands the present World Champion and the Winner of the Candidates tournament will play for the title of World Champion.
I would like to remind you that according to his status, Magnus is a member of the Presidential Council and the Executive Committee of FIDE.  He can send his proposal for the worldwide return of the knockout system to his colleagues and it will become part of FIDE’s official agenda at the Congress in Abu Dhabi in September this year. 

Kirsan Ilyumzhinov,
 President of the International Chess Federation (FIDE)