The FIFA World Cup’22 kicks off on Sunday when it finally turns to the on-field action, with tens of billions of dollars spent building stadiums and infrastructure.
The country spends lavishly and is one of the world’s largest natural gas producers, with just over 3 million population.
The new stadium in Qatar costs more than $6.5 billion, and the $36 billion driverless metro system operates at five of the eight locations. According to estimates, over the past decade, $200 billion has been spent on total infrastructure in Qatar.
Yet, in the latest update in October, the Pakistan men’s team was ranked 194th out of 211 teams. On the other hand, the women’s team is relatively better, ranked 160 out of 187.
A Sialkot company is one of two manufacturers, the other from China, supplying FIFA with at least 300,000 match balls for the event.
The company was among Sialkot’s leading exporters, with around $51 million in revenues in 2021-22.
According to data from the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics, the country shipped Rs 65.2 billion in sports goods during the year. A sports manufacturer has provided footballs for the World Cup. The company has the third consecutive contract since the 2014 and 2018 events.
Two types of balls are produced for such an international event. Pakistan supplied 35 percent of match balls in 2022, and the open market product was about 70 percent. For the event, 300,000 match balls are provided by both manufacturers to FIFA.
The World Cup football agreement is expected to fetch the company around 6 billion rupees, or $27 million.
According to FIFA, 3.5 billion viewers were estimated in 2018. Now, it is expected to reach 5 billion by 2022.