Ooredoo CEO “Confident” That Qatar Will Host 2022 FIFA World Cup

Exclusive: Nasser Marafih, CEO of Qatari telecoms firm Ooredoo, says Qatar will host FIFA’s most successful tournament ever.



Qatar is getting set to host a “successful” football World Cup tournament in 2022, according to a senior Qatari executive.

Speaking to Gulf Business, Dr.Nasser Marafih, CEO of Qatari telecoms operator Ooredoo said, “Ooredoo is a major supporter of the plans to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, which we believe will have important benefits for the region and for world football.

“Qatar has proven its ability to host international events and deliver superlative services, and Ooredoo is actively building a world-class network as the foundation to make Qatar one of the best-connected countries in the world.

“We are confident that Qatar will host the event, and make it one of the most successful in its history,” he added.

Qatar has been faced with a growing number of concerns since it won the bid to host the tournament in December 2010, beating rivals the US, Australia, Japan and South Korea.

It has been accused of corruption and labour mistreatment and analysts have also expressed worries about the extremely hot weather conditions in the Gulf state during summer, when the tournament is traditionally held.

One of the allegations resurfaced this month, when the UK’s Sunday Times reported that a former Qatari football official paid $5 million to FIFA representatives in exchange for their support for Qatar’s bid.

Following the report, five major FIFA sponsors including Adidas, Visa, Coca-Cola and Sony expressed concern and called for a thorough investigation of the claims.

Qatar has however denied all the allegations, and says it won the tournament purely on the basis of merit.

In a bid to resolve the matter, FIFA is currently conducting an internal investigation led by former US prosecutor Michael Garcia. He is due to submit a report to FIFA’s Ethics Committee in July.

If the report finds corruption, officials say Qatar could be stripped of the rights to hold the 2022 World Cup.

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