The Emirate of Qatar wants to host the 2032 Summer Olympics. On the TV station BeIN Sports, who belongs to the sports empire of the Emir of Qatar, IOC President Thomas Bach confirmed the offer from Doha. Other countries had previously expressed interest in 2032. The “Rhein Ruhr City” came together in North Rhine-Westphalia. Australia wants to send Queensland into the race. Indonesia and the two Korean states have also been mentioned. But with Doha, a new favorite should have entered the competition.
The IOC will enter into dialogue with Qatar. That’s what it’s called recently in the upturned system of Olympic applications. What the IOC sells as cost savings also means that it is even less publicly verifiable: dates and contents of this so-called dialogue are hardly known. The corresponding IOC commission for future summer games is headed by the Norwegian Kristin Kloster Aasen. Five of the nine other commissioners were among the 36 IOC members who insured the IOC president’s allegiance almost two weeks ago. This commission does the preparatory work in close consultation with the IOC leadership. If at the end the Executive Committee only names one interested party, then this city will also host the 2032 Summer Games. The vote of the IOC General Assembly is then only a matter of form.
Qatar has failed twice
In the past, when there were still many Olympic applicants and the IOC Executive Committee selected the official candidate cities from among those interested, Qatar failed twice. Technically, Doha was already better than many others in the competition for the 2016 and 2020 summer games. And since then Doha has changed a lot, the infrastructure is on an even higher level.
The first Olympic attempt: The IOC Executive Committee met in Athens in June 2008. In the evaluation report for applicants for the 2016 Summer Games, Doha was on par with Chicago after Tokyo and Madrid – clearly ahead of Rio de Janeiro, Baku and Prague. Thomas Bach is said to have campaigned for Doha. The then IOC President Jacques Rogge prevailed and had Doha sorted out. A year later, the 2016 Summer Games were awarded to the far less suitable Rio – also based on millions of bribes, as is now known. It was important to Rogge at the time not to let Doha enter the finals because of the very risk of bribery. The IOC justified the decision as follows: The date proposed by Doha for the summer games at the end of October could not be reconciled with the international sports calendar. The Qatar had coordinated this appointment with the IOC.
Bach is said to have supported the previous advances from Qatar
The second attempt: Four years later, in May 2012, the spectacle was repeated, this time at the IOC Executive Meeting in Quebec, this time it was about the 2020 Summer Games. Meanwhile, Qatar had received FIFA World Cup 2022 from FIFA. Corruption was debated worldwide, one revelation was chasing the next, Fifa was badly shaken, Qatar’s top football official Mohamed Bin Hammam was banned for life from corruption, and numerous judicial bodies have been investigated on several continents. Again, IOC President Rogge was able to stop Doha’s offer, and Bach is said to have again supported Qatar.
Once again, the application was rated technically better than that of other cities that entered the final round. At that time, twelve members of the IOC leadership voted: Tokyo and Madrid received twelve votes, Istanbul eleven – Doha only three and Baku none. Date issues and climatic conditions were discussed again. Olympics in October would bring bad TV ratings, it said. Qatar’s applicants criticized a “political decision”. Tokyo was elected by the IOC General Assembly in September 2013.
Qatar continued its expansion policy in Olympic sport unchanged. The next step was to award the 2019 World Athletics Championships. In addition to Doha, Barcelona and Eugene in the US state of Oregon applied. On the eve of the decision, Doha offered an additional $ 37 million sponsorship package. Doha won 15:12 against Eugene. Barcelona flew out in the first round.
There was also trouble about the World Athletics Championships
The awarding of the 2019 World Cup was also determined. The question to be answered was how many millions of the clan of the severely corrupt then world association president and IOC member Lamine Diack had diverted from the Qatar package. It is said to have been more than three million dollars from Qatar. Overall, Lamine Diack and his son Papa Massata caused $ 46 million in damages to the Athletics Association. This was the case in the corruption process against the Diacks and other officials in Paris in June 2020. Diack senior faces four years in prison, the junior five years. Both play a central role in the separate investigations into the 2016 and 2020 Olympic decisions.
In connection with the World Athletics Championships 2019, the French judiciary had also investigated Nasser Al-Khelaifi. As head of numerous institutions and companies such as Qatar Sports Investment (QSI), BeIN Sports and Paris St. Germain, Al-Khelaifi is one of the most influential people in world sports. Despite numerous suspicions and investigations, he became a member of the Executive Committee of the European Football Union (Uefa). Al-Khelaifi is Qatar’s top representative in the football business, alongside Hassan Al-Thawadi, General Secretary of the Organizing Committee for the 2022 World Cup. Al-Khelaifi opens the boxes in his diverse functions and buys influence. The investments in TV rights through BeIN Sports alone add up to billions.
Qatar has already spent several hundred billion dollars in the sports industry
At the 2019 World Athletics Championships, however, someone else was the puller and put the $ 37 million package on the table: Sheikh Saoud bin Abdulrahman Al Thani. He is one of the architects of Qatar’s sports policy to impress the Olympic world with huge investments and to make numerous world associations dependent on the petrodollars. As Secretary General of the Olympic Committee (QOC), he brought most of the World Championships to Qatar, he orchestrated the activities. Sheikh Saoud moved to the post of ambassador to Berlin in 2015. In 2019, Emir Tamim, IOC member since 2002, ordered him back to his court in Doha. In Amiri Diwan, the Emir’s government office, Saoud has since been responsible for sports, of course. This means that both the World Cup and future Olympic applications are his responsibility.
Including the World Cup investment, Qatar has spent several hundred billion dollars on the sports industry. Sheikh Saoud was responsible for a huge part of it. Saoud is responsible for the usual so-called development aid and cooperation contracts and other business with more than a hundred NOK and sports associations worldwide. Saoud is an Olympic institution – known as the man with the wallet. He was a board member of the Fiba basketball world association, is an honorary member of the fencing world association FIE – and is particularly well networked with IOC President Bach.
Although not an IOC member, he is probably one of the ten most powerful people in world sports. As soon as he was back in Doha last year, Qatar immediately hosted the first World Beach Games and the summit of all 206 Olympic committees – as a replacement host for San Diego, where the money had run out. It will not be long before the first of the Qatari state companies should become the top sponsors of the IOC. One step at a time on the way to the Summer Olympics.