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Hosting the FIFA World Cup paid off for Qatar

Data indicates that the country’s economy grew by 8%.

Hosting the FIFA World Cup paid off for Qatar
[Source photo: Chetan Jha/Fast Company Middle East]

Having spent approximately $200 billion preparing for kickoff, hosting the 2022 FIFA World Cup has paid off for Qatar.

According to S&P Global Market Intelligence’s latest report, Qatar’s economy grew by 8% annually in the fourth quarter of last year. 

This is also showcased by data from Qatar’s Planning and Statistics Authority, which reported that the country’s gross domestic product received a surge of $49.44 billion in the fourth quarter of last year, compared with $45.77 billion in the same period in 2021. 

Jamil Naayem, Principal Economist, S&P Global Market Intelligence, commented that the growth aligned with their estimates. “[This] is in line with our expectations and propped up by strong services sector activity amid the FIFA World Cup hosting in November–December. S&P Global Market Intelligence expects growth in the real economy to slow in the near term, within the context of weaker global demand, tighter financing conditions, and unfavorable base effects due to the World Cup hosting in Q4.”

The steady fourth-quarter economic activity raised the country’s real GDP growth close to 4.8% in 2022, which was “a level unseen since the middle of the last decade,” the report said. 

In December last year, Qatar Financial Center also released its Purchasing Managers’ Index survey report, indicating rapid business activity growth during the FIFA World Cup. In particular, wholesale, retail, and service providers experienced an increase in activity. These sectors also recorded an overall increase in prices for goods and services. 

The World Cup received around 3.4 million spectators, up from three million in 2018, according to FIFA’s website.

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