Once again the Associated Press (AP) news agency devotes an article to the condition of foreign workers in Qatar. That is, it deals with the people who, in conditions very similar to slavery and putting their lives at risk, made the construction of the stadiums possible in which Qatar 2022 matches are now being played. Like the readers of Calciomercato.com they will remember, AP denounced among other things the eviction suffered by thousands of workers from their homes in the center of Doha, which took place with only two hours notice twenty days after the start of the demonstration.
Yesterday AP returned to dealing with the issue with a long article in which it is told how foreign workers, who in the emirate constitute 85% of the resident population, live the matches of the world cup
For them too the fan zones organized by Fifa are too expensive ($14 for a pint of beer, just to give you an idea), so all that remains is to concentrate on the spaces of Asian Town, Doha shopping mall built
specially for them near areas where they are concentrated in extremely modest housing arrangements.
Just the Asian Town has been indicated by international observers as yet another means of segregation for the population of foreign workers, a bubble of consumption at low prices in which to concentrate migrants and keep them further under control.
Inside the mall there is also a 13,000-seat cricket stadium right there a giant screen was set up for the live broadcast of the matches. Another ghetto, where fans from the rest of the world do not arrive (these in turn well controlled within the FIFA fan zones, used as an outlet for prohibited behavior on the streets of the emirate) and the sense of being a vast foreign body is maintained in a country that owes all its wealth to these workers.
The agency’s reporters also collected testimonies from the workers concentrated on the cricket stadium’s lawn and this allowed to know some details about their daily life. Starting from extraordinarily low wage standards, especially if we consider that we are talking about one of the richest countries in the world.
Well, in this very rich country a foreign worker can find himself in the conditions having to live on just over $100 a month because he chooses to send his $600 a month salary to his family (about 576 euros at the current exchange rate). After all, only in recent months and under the weight of international criticism has Qatar finally set the minimum wage for foreign workers by law. A salary that amounts to a good 275 dollars a month (264 euros at the exchange rate). It is of such measures that the president of FifaGianni Infantino, speaks when he says that thanks to the World Cup Qatar is making progress on rights. Lucky him.