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Qatar 2022 World Cup - laws, changes and legacy benefits

Qatar football 2022
By Roberto Lusardi

The 2022 FIFA World Cup™ is shaping up to be a momentous event - the first to be held in the Middle East, the first to be hosted by an Arab country. It is well known that the FIFA obligations imposed on a host country in relation to the tournament involve substantial changes to its laws in order to accommodate FIFA’s commercial, licensing and tax requirements, among others.

This is not to say FIFA can simply impose its will and insist on complete changes to Qatar’s legal system. Also to be considered is that Qatar is a relatively conservative Arab country with traditional and established legal concepts and customs. While by necessity, and by virtue of similar situations at previous World Cups, changes will need to be made to certain local laws to meet FIFA requirements, such changes will need to be by way of agreement between the host country and FIFA. Getting this balance right will result in mutual benefits for Qatar and FIFA - a successful tournament as well developing an ongoing legacy for the host country in conjunction with the Qatar National Vision 20301. Some of these changes in law are still to be agreed while others may have already set in motion positive developments, as further shown below.

This article reviews the principal enabling laws required for the event. Specifically, it looks at the following areas:

  • Necessary changes to laws (enabling laws)

  • Sponsorship and merchandising

  • Customs and consumer protection

  • Tourism and events management

  • Gambling

  • Workers’ rights and laws

  • Accessibility requirements

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About the Author

Roberto Lusardi

Roberto Lusardi

Senior Associate: Al Tamimi & Company

Qualified to practice under English and South African Law, Roberto has gained extensive experience in a diverse range of TMT transactional and regulatory work, both in private practice and senior in-house roles. Roberto has developed expertise in areas such as network, channel and/or content distribution transactions, technology procurement, system/solution implementation and software licensing, advertising and sponsorship, digital media, privacy and data protection, e-commerce, carriage agreements, content production/acquisition and telecommunications.

Roberto is a dual Italian/South African citizen who has lived and practiced in Johannesburg, Bucharest and Doha. Prior to joining Al Tamimi & Company’s Qatar office, he worked at a prominent commercial law firm in South Africa, at the Bucharest office of a leading Romanian law firm and at the Qatar office of a global law firm.

After his most recent in-house position at Al Jazeera Media Network, Roberto joined Al Tamimi & Company to assist with developing the firm’s TMT practice; and, he also works closely with the Sports Law and Events Management practice on a number of regional matters.

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