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Dutch companies make millions of euros through Qatar World Cup construction projects

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Aug-06 23:01 first published at 23:01 PM


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Since winning the bid to host the World Cup, Qatar has been heavily criticized by Western media outlets for its treatment of migrant workers.
Despite the Netherlands’ harsh criticism of host country Qatar, Dutch companies made millions of euros from construction projects for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
On Tuesday, the findings were published in the Dutch newspaper Trouw, pointing to the deaths of migrant workers who were also involved in World Cup construction sites.
The newspaper stated that it is unknown whether any deaths occurred at the projects on which Dutch companies worked. Construction giant BAM, steel company Frijns Staal, and Royal HaskoningDHV are among the companies that made millions.

The companies worked on the construction of Qatar’s metro station, airport, and stadiums to welcome the 1.5 million football fans who will flock to the Gulf state for the sporting event.
While listing the companies, the Dutch outlet claimed Qatar was not ready for the November kickoff, despite statements from Qatari and FIFA officials to the contrary.
The latest report on money earned by Dutch companies runs counter to the Netherlands’ protest statements about Qatar hosting the World Cup due to human rights violations.
ING, Albert Heijn, KPN, and lottery company Nederlandse Loterij were among the Dutch national football team’s sponsors who opted out of the event.
Over the last few years, the Dutch football federation (KNVB) has been among those who have expressed opposition to the sporting event. Last year, the federation told Doha News that it was never “in favor” of Qatar’s bid for the 2022 World Cup due to its “lack of football history and harsh temperatures.”
However, during its February visit to Doha, the KNVB reversed its statements.
During the visit, Dutch members approved the St. Regis Hotel in Doha as the national football team’s accommodation, as well as two football fields at Qatar University as designated training venues.
Labor reorganization
Since winning the bid to host the World Cup in 2010, Qatar has been heavily criticized by Western media outlets for its treatment of migrant workers.
However, Qatari authorities have slammed several of the outlets’ headlines as “sensationalist.”
At the World Economic Forum in May, Qatar’s Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani lashed out at the Gulf state’s unfair criticism (WEF).
“The Middle East has suffered from discrimination for decades.” “And I’ve discovered that such discrimination is largely based on people not knowing us, and in some cases, refusing to get to know us,” Sheikh Tamim explained.
Since winning the bid to host the major event, Qatar has implemented historic reforms to ensure workers’ rights are respected.
Among them was the dismantling of the contentious Kafala system, which prohibited workers from freely changing jobs. Another example is the region’s first non-discriminatory minimum wage law, which was passed last year.
Doha has also collaborated closely with the United Nations’ International Labour Organization (ILO) and other international organizations to improve local working conditions.
“These individuals, many of whom hold positions of power, have launched attacks at a rate never seen before when a mega-sporting event was hosted by other countries on different continents,” the amir said, noting that those countries face their own set of issues and challenges.
In order to better assist workers, the ministry of labor announced the launch of a new platform for worker complaints in May 2021. Employees can use this to report public violations of labor law.
In December alone, over 2,000 labor complaints were filed with the ministry against firms and institutions across the country, resulting in massive fines and punitive action.
While positive changes have been observed and praised by human rights organizations, there have been numerous reports of employers failing to comply with the reforms.

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