This year’s World Cup, which is set to begin in November, has cost Qatar over £193 billion, almost 20 times what Russia spent in 2018, according to media reports.
The estimation by Front Office Sports has been republished by the Qatari media and has not been denied by the authorities.
The cost is almost 20 times the amount of money Russia spent on hosting the World Cup in 2018.
Ever since Qatar was awarded the World Cup in 2010, the Gulf state has been building infrastructure that will accommodate an anticipated 1.5 million visitors.
The building of stadiums cost around £5.7 billion to £8.8 billion, and the remaining bulk of £193 billion was used as part of the broader Qatar 2030 National plan, which centres around developing infrastructure, including construction of an innovation centre with hotels, a sophisticated metro network, and airports.
“The World Cup is a part of the Qatar National Vision 2030, a broader government strategy promoting the intensive development of urban and national facilities and industry, in addition to education and healthcare systems,” Fatma Al Nuaimi, Communications Executive Director for the tournament, told The Sun, stressing that that these three developments were all part of Qatar’s wider vision for life after the World Cup.
“Most of these large-scale infrastructure projects, which will be used by teams and fans in 2022, such as new roads, a subway, an airport, hotels and other tourist facilities were planned even before we obtained the right to host the World Cup.”
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According to Doha News, the development of the country’s infrastructure and transportation systems, the largest of which is the Doha Metro, required a significant amount of investment.
The massive underground transportation network, which opened in 2019, cost about £31.6 billion to build and is anticipated to be essential for supporters who want to travel quickly throughout the city during the tournament.
Another crucial component was the Hamad International Airport. The country has since spent £14 billion developing it since it first opened in 2014.
The previous highest budget was the £13 billion spent by Brazil in 2014, while South Africa spent £3.1 billion four years prior.