*FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 to offer global celebration in post-Covid era
FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 will be an event that would leave a legacy of improving the lives of several people around the world, Hassan al-Thawadi, secretary general of the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SC) has said, expressing optimism that Qatar would be able to play host to a global celebration in a post-Covid world by hosting a fantastic world cup.
Delivering a keynote address at the World Innovation Summit for Health (WISH) 2020 on Wednesday, al-Thawadi said: “We certainly hope that by November 2022 we are able to play host to a global celebration in a post-Covid world. We sincerely hope that we’re able to welcome as many visitors as possible to our country – and to our region – many of whom will be visiting for the first time and experiencing their first taste of the Middle East and Arab world."
He added: “We’re acutely aware of the socioeconomic effects of the pandemic around the world and are striving to offer an affordable and safe World Cup.”
“Our collective future hinges on a co-ordinated and coherent approach to public health, both physical and mental. This was a necessity before the spread of Covid, and that necessity is now an imperative,” he said.
Al-Thawadi spoke about the steps the organisation has taken to protect the health and safety of its staff, including multilingual awareness sessions provided by in-house health experts.
“The proactive strategy we employed enabled us to manage the spread of Covid-19 on our projects for up to six weeks until the first case was reported. Under the guidance and approval of the local health authorities, we introduced our own 1,000-bed capacity isolation facility to ensure the monitoring and maintenance of strict quarantine protocol to minimise the spread of infection among the rest of the workforce.”
He noted that sport must be considered a critical vehicle for contributing to the shared mission of maintaining physical and mental health across the globe.
“As societies strive to emerge from lockdowns, sport is playing an important role in our journey toward a return to normalcy,” he said.
Al-Thawadi, who also serves as chairman of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, a joint venture between FIFA and the SC responsible for organising and staging the event, said sport can be used in a variety of ways to preserve mental and physical health.
“We all remember the power that sport has to contribute to our shared cause, and to ensure we harness that power in the future for the sake of public health, community, and a brighter future for the generations to come.”
WISH, Qatar Foundation’s global health initiative, is dedicated to capturing and disseminating the best evidence-based ideas and practices with a mission to create a healthier world through global collaboration.