Qatar is preparing for the FIFA World Cup 2022 as a major tourism sporting event. But once the fans have left, what does the future hold for Qatar’s fledgling tourism industry? As economist Andrew Zimbalist argues in his book Circus Maximus: The Economic Gamble behind hosting the Olympics and the World Cup, sports mega-events have not always generated net economic advantages for towns or countries (Brookings Press, 2015). He cites the disastrous 1976 MontrĂ©al, Quebec Olympics (which left the city in debt for 30 years), the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in Beijing, and the 2014 Sochi Winter Games as cautionary lessons.

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