Blatter: Qatar must do more for workers

FIFA president Sepp Blatter said that "more must be done" to improve working conditions in Qatar, as the country prepares for the 2022 World Cup.

Blatter commented after a visit to Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani, who acknowledged last year that various setbacks had occurred during development work in the country.

While the Emir said in 2014 that a new legal framework was being introduced in the country to improve the conditions in which workers ply their trade, the International Trade Union Confederation claims that more than 1,000 migrants have already lost their lives as a result.

Addressing the media before the FIFA executive committee meeting in Zurich on Thursday and Friday, Blatter urged Qatar to see that all workers are provided with "fair" conditions to work in.

"It was important for me to have an opportunity to get the latest information directly from the highest political authority, ahead of the executive committee meeting next week," Blatter said.

"It is encouraging to hear the Emir's personal commitment to workers' welfare and to get a sense of the improvements planned for all workers in Qatar.

"As various human-rights groups have recently noted, progress has been made already, especially with regard to the standards introduced by the supreme committee relating to 2022 construction sites, but more must be done in Qatar to ensure uniformly fair working conditions for all.

"This will only be possible through the collective effort of all stakeholders – from the construction companies to the authorities. It is clear that Qatar takes its responsibility as host seriously and sees the FIFA World Cup as a catalyst for positive social change."