Doha, 17 December 2020 - After hosting an impressive Asian Games in 2006, the continental sports gala will return to the Qatari capital for the second time in 2030.
Doha’s bid prevailed over Riyadh 27-10 in a vote held during the Olympic Council of Asia’s General Assembly in Muscat yesterday. Riyadh will host the 2034 edition.
The official declaration proclaiming Doha as the 2030 host city was made at the JW Marriot in Muscat under the auspices of Sayyid Theyazin bin Haitham al-Said, Oman’s Minister of Culture, Sports and Youth, in the presence of top dignitaries from across the continent.
Riyadh will host the 2034 edition after Shaikh Ahmad al-Fahad al-Sabah, President of the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA), affirmed that the both cities delivered excellent presentations.
Qatar’s delegation celebrated after the announcement and HE Sheikh Joaan bin Hamad al-Thani, President of Qatar Olympic Committee, signed the agreement contract for 2030 while HRH Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki al-Faisal, President of Saudi Arabian Olympic Committee, signed the contract for the 2034 Asian Games.
The voting was held online as well manually. A series of rehearsals was done to familiarise the voters with the methodology of the e-voting procedure, but later on the OCA president decided to proceed with manual voting for the Muscat attendees and online voting for those who were attending virtually.
Speaking after being awarded the bid, Qatar Olympic Committee (QOC) Secretary General and CEO of the Doha bid HE Jassim bin Rashid al-Buenain said: “We are very proud of this historic moment. We would like to dedicate the hosting of this top Asian event to His Highness Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, Amir of the State of Qatar, and HE Sheikh Joaan bin Hamad al-Thani, the president of Qatar Olympic Committee and to Qatar’s people.
“All the members of the 2030 Doha bid were confident about winning the Games,” he added.
“The huge development Qatar has achieved in sports is an outcome of 16 years of hard work. We have managed successfully to host this top Asian event (in 2006). Qatar has top infrastructure. It is not only the readiness of the facilities that matters but also the capability and ability of human resources and their experience to manage any top sporting events,” he said.
The Secretary General of the QOC thanked the OCA for the well-organised assembly. “A special thanks to all the NOCs for their trust in Doha. A dedicated thanks to the Sultanate of Oman and to their top efforts during to host the General Assembly of the OCA during this tough time of pandemic and thanks to all the delegations and the attendees.”
The Qatar Swimming Association President Khalil al-Jabir, who is also a member of the bid committee, pointed out that Qatar has a clear strategy of depending on well-mapped plans and activities to improve further in sports.
“Qatar hosts 70 top events every year. The readiness of infrastructure and the well-structured transport system are supporting tools to facilitate the athletes and delegations. The future of sporting events is in line with Qatar’s National Vision 2030. Asian Games will require top class complexes and we are ready to host them,” he added.
Sheikha Asma al-Thani, Director of Marketing & Communications of Qatar Olympic Committee, added that hosting the Asian Games means a lot for women. “The top sporting events impact and influence positively in the society. Many youths will get inspired with the star athletes as they attend the competitions. They would like to win medals in top sporting championships,” she said.
Olympic high jump champion Mutaz Issa Barshim promised that he will do his best to get a medal at the 2030 Doha Asian Games. “If there are no injuries, I’ll be ready for the event,” he said.