Richard Whittall:

The Globalist's Top Ten Books in 2016: The Turbulent World of Middle East Soccer

Middle East Eye: "

The Turbulent World of Middle East Soccer is one of the weightiest, most revelatory, original and important books written about sport"

“The Turbulent World of Middle East Soccer has helped me immensely with great information and perspective.”

Bob Bradley, former US and Egyptian national coach: "James Dorsey’s The Turbulent World of Middle Eastern Soccer (has) become a reference point for those seeking the latest information as well as looking at the broader picture."
Alon Raab in The International Journal of the History of Sport: “Dorsey’s blog is a goldmine of information.”
Play the Game: "Your expertise is clearly superior when it comes to Middle Eastern soccer."
Andrew Das, The New York Times soccer blog Goal: "No one is better at this kind of work than James Dorsey"
David Zirin, Sports Illustrated: "Essential Reading"
Change FIFA: "A fantastic new blog'

Richard Whitall of A More Splendid Life:
"James combines his intimate knowledge of the region with a great passion for soccer"

Christopher Ahl, Play the Game: "An excellent Middle East Football blog"
James Corbett, Inside World Football

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Qatar to Pay Cash for 2022 World Cup Infrastructure

Qatar will foot with cash the US$70 billion price tag for infrastructure needed to host the 2022 World Cup, according to the head of the International Bank of Qatar (IBQ).

IBQ Managing Director George Nasra says that oil and gas projects in Qatar are likely to produce a $130 billion budget surplus in the next five years, ensuring that World Cup infrastructure will not negatively affect the Gulf state's cashflow.

"All government-sponsored projects will be cash funded," Nasra said.

Qatar plans to build the infrastructure in phases. Work on a national rail system and metro lines in the capital Doha is scheduled to start in 2015 as is the further development of the airport, a deep water port and a causeway connecting Qatar with Bahrain. Qatar will also build 12 air-conditioned stadiums to compensate for scorching summer temperatures.

Estimates for the cost of the infrastructure vary with rating agency Standard and Poor's (S&P) at the lower end of the projections putting the total cost at $63 billion or 47 percent of Qatar's 2010 gross domestic product (GDP).

"We expect most of the infrastructure will be financed via revenues from the oil and gas sectors," S&P credit analyst Luc Marchand said in a report in December.

"In our opinion, this could lead to a lower, although still substantial, surplus in the government's budget at above 7 per cent of GDP in 2011-2013," Marchand said.

Development of the World Cup infrastructure is likely to boost the private sector with the requirement to increase the country's currently available 12,000 hotel rooms to 90,000 in 2022 and the $5.5 billion cost of building housing and schools for expatriates expected to flock in to support the projects.

Human rights and labour activists are gearing up to use Qatar’s hosting of the 2022 World Cup as a way to pressure Gulf state to improve abominable working conditions of its large-number of unskilled or lowly skilled expatriate workforce.

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