As the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) conducts site visits ahead of the 2030 Asian Games host city election scheduled for December, the Doha delegation claims plans provide “a gateway of certainty” for athletes and federations.
On the occasion of the Professional Squash Association (PSA) Qatar Classic in Doha last week, Doha 2030 CEO and Qatar Olympic Committee Secretary General Jassim AlBuenain said “providing athletes with a safe and world-class environment to compete is always our first priority.”
AlBuenain pointed to the Khalifa International and Squash Complex, proposed venue for squash if Doha is elected to host in 2030, as a shining example of the state-of-the-art venues and high-level safety protocols to be offered to the OCA.
“If Doha has the honor of hosting the 2030 Asian Games, our state-of-the-art venues will provide a gateway to certainty for the OCA family and for Asia’s athletes that they can expect the very best conditions,” he said.
“We have proven ourselves reliable partners and we are ready to put our experience and expertise to the benefit of Asian sport.”
Qatar is preparing to host the FIFA World Cup in 2022 and has built new infrastructure for that event that could be carried forward to 2030. Recent transportation upgrades and the development of new hotels and accommodations underline the preparedness of the oil-rich Gulf state.
In a statement, the bid committee highlighted its transportation network that will keep travel times to a minimum.
“Complementing Doha’s existing venues is a hyper-efficient and effective transportation network that will service the venues and Athletes Village. An integrated system of roads, light rail, buses and Metro that has already facilitated the journeys of large crowds from the Doha 2006 Asian Games through to multiple World Cups and World Championships.”
Doha 2030 and Qatar Olympic Committee (QOC) President HE Sheikh Joaan Bin Hamad Al-Thani said “Doha truly is a city that is Games-ready, right now; as are our modern, world-class venues and sophisticated transport system.”
“Already, they represent Asia’s legacy from [the 2006 Asian Games]. But with Doha 2030 we want to build on this and provide a gateway to certainty and an enduring legacy for Asia.
“We will work with the OCA and Asia’s NOCs to ensure that the next ten years focus on Asian sport and its development. And we can do this because we are ready now, ready to inspire hope through sport and be ‘Your Gateway to a Brighter Future for Asian Sport’.”
Doha’s only obstacle is bid and geopolitical rival Riyadh that is receiving OCA inspectors this week. The Saudi Arabian capital is underlining its bid as a national priority. The nation has never hosted and Asian Games.
The winning bid will be elected during the 39th OCA General Assembly scheduled for December 16 in Muscat, Oman.
A senior producer and award-winning journalist covering Olympic bid business as founder of GamesBids.com as well as providing freelance support for print and Web publications around the world. Robert Livingstone is a member of the Olympic Journalists Association and the International Society of Olympic Historians.