qatar.2022.logoFIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke said Wednesday there were still problems with the conditions of migrant workers building stadiums for the 2022 World Cup but he was “very happy” with steps taken by Qatar.

“It’s clear there are problems and things to be solved,” Valcke told a Doha press conference.

He said that Qatar was beginning to comply with international standards, which was a “big step”.

He also said FIFA was in continuing discussions with groups such as the International Labour Organisation over the issue of workers’ rights.

Valcke added that he had visited “a lot of stadiums” on Tuesday, after a FIFA task force meeting decided to recommend moving the tournament to November and December 2022 because of climate concerns.

“In a nutshell I am very happy with what we have seen,” he said.

Valcke said he had inspected conditions for workers on site and their accommodation facilities and said the changes taking place were down to the “power of the World Cup”.

Workers’ rights in Qatar have long been a controversial issue since the tiny Gulf state was awarded the tournament in December 2010.

Rights’ groups have accused Qatar of appalling conditions for workers and say any reforms brought in by the country have been too slow.

Earlier this month, Qatar announced it was introducing a system to ensure migrant workers would be paid at least once a month, a move long called for by groups such as Amnesty and Human Rights Watch. – Agence France-Presse

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