Building a New Future: The 2022 FIFA World Cup as a Potential Catalyst for Labor Reform in Qatar

By Crocombe, Nigel G. | Suffolk Transnational Law Review, Winter 2014 | Go to article overview

Building a New Future: The 2022 FIFA World Cup as a Potential Catalyst for Labor Reform in Qatar


Crocombe, Nigel G., Suffolk Transnational Law Review


I. INTRODUCTION

On December 2, 2010, the Federation Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) awarded the 2022 FIFA World Cup (World Cup) to Qatar, a bold selection that shocked the international sporting community and brought scenes of jubilation to the streets of Doha. (1) Now, Qatar, the first Middle Eastern country to host the tournament, is eager to leverage the event to spur extensive economic development and redefine itself as a modern center for business and tourism. (2) Unfortunately, in its pursuit of this vision, Qatar routinely fails to adhere to International Labour Organization (ILO) conventions, which mandate the abolition of forced labor. (3) Qatar allows employers to abuse and exploit millions of migrant workers by circumventing its limited labor laws and capitalizing on its lack of adequate government oversight. (4) If Qatar does not act soon to uphold its international commitments and seriously address labor reform, there will be more migrant worker deaths from building World Cup stadia than there will be athletes competing in the entire tournament. (5)

This Note will explore how Qatar's failed international commitments, weak domestic laws, and poor government oversight facilitate the abuse and exploitation of millions of migrant workers during the construction boom leading up to the World Cup. (6) Part II of this Note will focus on the problems that migrant workers encounter in light of the respective international and domestic legal frameworks. (7) Part III of this Note will discuss the pertinent ILO conventions, as well as Qatar's current labor laws. (8) Next, Part IV of this Note will provide prescriptive ideas to end forced labor in Qatar, recommending that it adhere to ILO conventions, dramatically increase the size and authority of oversight agencies, and reform domestic labor laws. (9) Finally, Part V of this Note will conclude by underscoring that the World Cup can be a potential catalyst for labor reform and that this is an historic opportunity to help empower millions of migrant workers. (10)

II. FACTS

A. Recent Development in Qatar

During the past decade, Qatar rapidly developed into a modern, thriving, and increasingly influential Middle Eastern nation. (11) Emir Sheikh Hammad bin Khalifa Al-Thani (the Emir), the powerful head of Qatar's constitutional monarchy, is primarily responsible for guiding the emirate's growth and bringing about this transformation. (12) Under the Emir's leadership, Qatar aggressively invested its abundant oil and gas revenues into major economic development initiatives. (13) The resulting economic prosperity disproportionately benefits Qatar's 300,000 citizens, who only account for 15% of the population. (14) Today, Qatari citizens enjoy near-universal employment in lucrative public sector positions and significant state benefits. (15) Consequently, for many Qataris, the privilege of hosting the World Cup is the culmination of a decade of progress and transition. (16)

B. The Winning World Cup Bid

The FIFA Executive Committee voted to award Qatar the World Cup after a lengthy and competitive bidding process. (17) As part of the vetting process, the FIFA Executive Committee compiled an in-depth report of the benefits and challenges facing Qatar's bid; however, the report largely overlooked the presence and treatment of migrant workers. (18) FIFA has yet to signal how it will address the migrant worker abuse in Qatar, but it has launched a serious ethical investigation into Qatar's World Cup bid following accusations of bribery and corruption related to Qatar's bid. (19) While the recent claims do not directly relate to the problems affecting migrant workers, they could lend credence to ongoing allegations that members of the FIFA Executive Committee were willing to overlook these problems--as well as other logistical issues--in exchange for bribes. (20) Qatar continues to deny any wrongdoing. (21)

In response to growing international criticism concerning Qatar's labor practices, FIFA defended its selection of Qatar and emphasized that FIFA strives to uphold respect for human rights and international norms of behavior. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Building a New Future: The 2022 FIFA World Cup as a Potential Catalyst for Labor Reform in Qatar
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.