Gulf States Use Sports to Open Doors

Qatar plans to use the World Cup to open doors in Europe and elsewhere.

The Gulf States are using sports investments, in much the same way that Spain has, to position themselves as global players in numerous industries, according to Qatar plans to use its investment as host of the 2022 World Cup as a way to build business relationships in countries where soccer is king. Qatar’s Sheikh Abdullah Bin Nasser Al Thani won a contract to develop Spain’s $550 million Marbella yacht port the elite Malaga soccer team. The Royal Emirates group is planning to follow the same model after buying Madrid’s Getafe. Royal Emirates is looking to finance a spa resort near Granada on the grounds of a former Arab settlement.

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