DOHA: Qatar’s World Cup organisers have adjusted their budgets in the wake of economic changes to protect plans to stage the finals in the winter of 2022.
That assurance has been delivered by Hassan Al Thawadi, secretary-general of the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy.
Questions had been raised after suggestions that a fall in crude oil prices had helped persuade the body tasked with making the preparations and hosting the finals to use a minimum possible eight stadia.
Al Thawadi said: “Of course, our budget is assigned by the government but we were already working towards reducing our expenses before the oil prices went down. So when the oil price went down we had already worked out significant steps towards adjusting our budgets.
“Then, as the oil prices came down we started having discussions with the government and the impact of the slump was as great as people would have assumed.”
However Al Thawadi stressed that the Supreme Committee intended to keep its promise to world federation FIFA and fans around the world of hosting a world-class World Cup.
He said: “Of course, we will keep our promise of hosting the World Cup.”
As for the financial model, he added: “We are working with the government and private sector together. The PPP or the public–private partnership model, we are working on that.
“Various business models are under place, recession models, models that get us the desired result with minimum expenditure – they are being tried.”
Al Thawadi reaffirmed a commitment towards sustainability and greener tomorrow as evidenced by its adoption of the Global Organisation for Research and Development model which that focuses on reduced carbon footprint in infrastructure and green buildings.”
He added: “So we are not just preparing for the World Cup, but are effectively working towards a greener and healthier tomorrow.”