The Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy (SC) showcased the country’s journey at the FIFA World Cup™ during the second edition of the Municipal Investment Forum (FURAS) in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Khalid Al Mawlawi

The SC representative to the forum, Khalid Al Mawlawi, gave a speech during the event, outlining the bid process, infrastructure development, test events and legacy programmes for the tournament, which was considered the first mega sporting event to be staged in the Middle East and the Arab world.

FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ was held over 29 days in November and December. More than 1.4 million people visited Qatar during the tournament, which was held in eight state-of-the-art stadiums – all within an hour’s journey time of central Doha. The tournament featured a record 172 goals and a final match between Argentina and France, regarded by many as the greatest football game of all time.

Al Mawlawi, the Deputy Director General of Marketing, Communications and Event Experience at SC, described Qatar 2022 as an achievement for all Arabs.

I am pleased to reiterate what Qatar promised at the start of this journey – which is that 2022 would be a tournament for all Arabs. These were the words of HH Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Amir of the State of Qatar, during the inauguration of Khalifa International Stadium in 2017.

He said there is no doubt that what the world witnessed in Qatar is an achievement for every Arab – and they hope it becomes an inspiration to everyone to strive for seemingly impossible dreams.

Hosting the FIFA World Cup™ allowed Qatar to showcase the region in a positive light, added Al Mawlawi.

He said they believed the time was right to bring the World Cup to the Arab world for the first time – to shed light on the region’s culture and heritage and change the world’s negative perceptions of the region.

We provided a platform which united fans through their passion for football and offered a golden opportunity for a beautiful exchange of cultures.

The tournament also accelerated the goals of Qatar National Vision 2030, which aims to develop a knowledge economy and reduce the country’s reliance on hydrocarbons.

Al Malawi shared that a huge number of infrastructure projects were accelerated due to the World Cup, including new expressways, the Doha Metro and the expansion of Hamad International Airport. A host of accommodation and entertainment facilities were also created, which will be utilised by residents and visitors for decades to come.

Most compact FIFA World Cup™ in modern history

Qatar hosted the most compact edition of the FIFA World Cup™ in modern history. The longest distance between stadiums was just 75 km – meaning fans, players, officials and the media were always in the thick of the action. Public transport was free during the tournament, with most fans using the Doha Metro, which was directly connected to five stadiums.

Looking to the future, the infrastructure developed for the tournament will continue to benefit local communities for years to come.

Each stadium reflects the culture and heritage of Qatar and the region. And, even more importantly, the facilities developed in stadium precincts are serving local people and promoting healthy lifestyles.

Al Bayt and Al Janoub stadiums have huge public parks, while other stadiums have a range of facilities and businesses that are boosting local communities.

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