No one could have missed the furore surrounding the corruption charges of FIFA executives, followed by the resignation of the organisation’s president, Sepp Blatter. This has once again raised concerns over the future hosting of the World Cup by Qatar.
Maxim Recruitment is naturally keeping an eye on the situation with regard to the projects started or planned for this project to ensure we can advise correctly.
The FIFA Background
To be fair, even before the latest developments, there were concerns. When FIFA awarded the Gulf State of Qatar the World Cup 2022 hosting, questions were raised over why a state that has little domestic football and where temperatures at the time of the tournament exceed 40°C was chosen.
Despite the implications, the President of Qatar’s Football Association and member of the ruling family, Al-Thani has denied any allegations of corruption in the process; he has also confirmed that they will cooperate with any on-going investigations.
All Above Board?
Allegations were quelled by an investigation costing $6bn into the possibilities of corruption in the award. The investigation was carried out by FIFA’s ethics investigator Michael Garcia who produced a 430 page document. The version made public was a summary of just 42 pages which cleared Russia and Qatar of any misconduct in the proceedings. Unfortunately, Garcia resigned just a day after its publication because of discrepancies in the reporting which has still left a question mark hanging over the findings.
Even since the recent arrests and the resignation of Blatter, FIFA has issued a statement:
"Russia and Qatar were awarded the 2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cups by democratic vote of the Executive Committee. Based on expert opinions and available facts, FIFA has no legal grounds to take away the hosting of the FIFA World Cup from Russia and Qatar."
But still there are still doubts.
Construction in Qatar
Several infrastructure projects in Qatar are already underway but an industry spokesperson suggests this isn’t just for the World Cup. It is more to do with Qatar’s National Vision 2030 policy. The Qatari government is prepared to invest over $70bn on infrastructure and transport plus investing in hotels and necessary stadia for the World Cup.
Qatar’s economy is one of the fastest growing in the Middle East; it also boasts one of the most stable and credit-worthy economies in the region. Its natural resources of gas and oil make it one of the wealthiest countries per capita in the world and supplies aren’t running out any time soon.
At the end of last year Qatar came in at second as the most energised for infrastructure investments, topped only by Singapore. In fact around half of the forthcoming planned investments will focus on transport for the country.
Edd Brookes General Manager of DTZ Qatar is reported as confirming that real estate would remain in high demand too. This despite the rising cost of land and construction in general. This is all part of the National Vision 2030 and is about preparing for an economy that doesn’t depend on oil and gas but moves towards knowledge and technology as economy forces.
If his predictions are correct, then this is all good news for the construction industry in Qatar.
Even UK construction firms already engaged on projects related to the World Cup 2022 programme are shaken but not yet stirred about the threat of Qatar losing its hosting rights. Only time will tell.
Get in Touch
In the meantime we will continue to keep an eye on the market so that we can advise clients about the job market in Qatar and the Middle East as a whole.
If you are interested to discuss your suitability for a particular project or location, please submit your CV via the Maxim Recruitment website giving further information about your preferences in the covering letter.
Middle East & Asia Recruitment Director