FIFA head Infantino signs contract to get $1.5M salary

ZURICH: FIFA President Gianni Infantino has agreed an annual salary of 1.5 million Swiss francs ($1.53 million) with no bonus in 2016, seeking to end a distracting issue of his first six months in office.

FIFA said Infantino will also receive a chauffeured car, his lodgings paid, plus monthly expenses of 2,000 Swiss francs ($2,040), in the contract agreed with a three-member compensation panel and signed Wednesday.

He will be eligible for a bonus in 2017 under a new compensation policy being drafted by FIFA.

"I am pleased that this matter is resolved and that I have a signed, valid employment agreement," Infantino said in a statement released by FIFA.

The deal backdated to February, ends a dispute that saw former FIFA audit panel chairman Domenico Scala resign in protest.

Infantino had described as "insulting" Scala's offer of around 2 million Swiss francs ($2.04 million) and no bonus.

FIFA's former president and secretary general, Sepp Blatter and Jerome Valcke, got bonuses of at least $10 million for each World Cup.

Blatter and Valcke got basic salaries of around $3 million and $2 million, respectively, before leaving FIFA this year. Both have been banned from soccer by FIFA's ethics committee for financial wrongdoing and are under criminal investigation by Swiss federal prosecutors.

FIFA described the compensation system being phased out as "inadequate and open to malfunction and misuse."

The new secretary general Fatma Samoura has agreed a contracted salary of 1.3 million Swiss francs ($1.32 million) the world soccer body said.

That reverses a Scala recommendation that the CEO-like secretary general should be the highest-paid staffer following reforms which took some executive powers from the presidential office.

The compensation panel met Wednesday under the leadership of Scala's replacement, Tomaz Vesel, and included Issa Hayatou, the longtime African soccer leader who is Infantino's senior vice president and FIFA finance panel chairman.

"The compensation amounts in our view are absolutely appropriate considering the challenging duties of the President and the Secretary General," said Vesel, a state auditor from Slovenia.