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Hilal Al-Kuwari

QATAR - Health & Education

Empower the People

President, Aspire Zone

Bio

Hilal Al-Kuwari has a distinguished history in high-level sports and other large-scale development projects. He oversaw the development and operation of the Sports City project, now known as Aspire Zone, including planning and infrastructure overlay for the venues of the 2006 Asian Games, which took place in Doha. With a background in engineering, he served in senior management positions at Qatar Petroleum and RasGas City, where he was the Manager of Support Services.

How would you evaluate the importance of sport, tourism, and education as a part of the Qatar National Vision 2030, and the role of Aspire Zone within that context? The […]

How would you evaluate the importance of sport, tourism, and education as a part of the Qatar National Vision 2030, and the role of Aspire Zone within that context?

The Qatar National Vision 2030 addresses major challenges facing Qatar, and its wise leadership has foreseen the long-term benefits of investing in diversity. Sport has the ability to empower individuals. It can encourage people of all ages to become more physically active, provide opportunities for recreation and personal development, build self-esteem, and foster positive social connection with peers. This aspect of sport as a tool for development is central to the Qatar Nation Vision 2030, as sport will realize all four of the development pillars for Qatar. The Aspire Zone Foundation (AZF), since its inception in 2003 as the Sports City project, is committed to carrying Qatar to the status of a true knowledge-based society by offering the country an empowered and healthy population working toward the goals of 2030. AZF has evolved, and today works to develop sports champions, promote healthy lifestyles, and galvanize the sports economy of today—and of the future—through a network of member organizations: Aspire Academy, Aspetar, and Aspire Logistics. Some of the important programs and initiatives include Aspire ACTIVE, Aspire Football Dreams, and Step into Health. Furthermore, Qatar is now home to over 175 nationalities. AZF harnesses the universal popularity of sport as a social connector and brings people and communities together.

How important is the legacy of the Asian Games in preparations for future international sports events?

The Asian Games 2006 signaled Qatar’s arrival on the global sports stage, as over 10,500 athletes from 45 countries around the globe participated. The opening ceremony alone, held at Khalifa International Stadium, welcomed 50,000 spectators. In addition, the 15-day event drew a television audience of 1.5 billion viewers. This country has a long and proven track record of hosting world-class sport events. From the cycling Tour of Qatar, to annual tennis championships, and Golf masters, Qatar sees a bevy of sport activities all year round. Today, Qatar is synonymous with such global brands as FC Barcelona, 2022 FIFA World Cup 2022, Paris Saint-Germain, the Al Kass International Cup, the prestigious ASPIRE4SPORT, Doha GOAL Forum events, and more. As curators, hosts, and organizers, we at AZF are experiencing some of our busiest years in recent memory as we gear up to further capture the imagination of the sporting world. Because of AZF’s critical role on Qatar’s sporting map, we will not simply be the home to one of the 12 stadiums for the 2022 FIFA World Cup, but we will also watch eagerly as an entire generation of some of our Aspire Academy graduates take to the field and compete against the world’s best.

What is Aspire Zone’s role in attracting tourism to Qatar?

From Aspire Dome, credited as the world’s largest indoor multipurpose dome, to Aspire Park, acknowledged as one of the most inspiring parks in the Gulf region, Aspire Zone is an ultimate haven for enthusiasts of sports and an active lifestyle. Of course, AZF has been so successful because Qatar is the economic superstar of the GCC, as well as an authentic bearer of the Middle East’s rich culture. Any stay in Doha is filled with new experiences to be shared with friends and prospects from across the five continents. Consequently, Qatar has become an international hub for conferences and exhibitions and, over the past few years, has played host to an array of world-class events, including the UN Climate Change Conference, COP 18, and the World Innovation Summit for Education. AZF is also home to two five-star luxury hotels, Grand Heritage Doha Hotel and Spa, and the Torch Doha Hotel.

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