Thursday, November 9, 2017

Leaked Documents Expose Stunning Plan to Wage Financial War on Qatar — and Steal the World Cup



A PLAN FOR the United Arab Emirates to wage financial war against its Gulf rival Qatar was found in the task folder of an email account belonging to UAE Ambassador to the United States Yousef al-Otaiba and subsequently obtained by The Intercept.

The economic warfare involved an attack on Qatar’s currency using bond and derivatives manipulation. The plan, laid out in a slide deck provided to The Intercept through the group Global Leaks, was aimed at tanking Qatar’s economy, according to documents drawn up by a bank outlining the strategy.

The outline, prepared by Banque Havilland, a private Luxembourg-based bank owned by the family of controversial British financier David Rowland, laid out a scheme to drive down the value of Qatar’s bonds and increase the cost of insuring them, with the ultimate goal of creating a currency crisis that would drain the country’s cash reserves.

WHILE THE SCHEME itself would be an ambitious undertaking, the goal is ultimately petty: It’s about soccer.

One of the plan’s stated aims is forcing Qatar to share soccer’s 2022 World Cup, according to the outline. The strategy laid out in the document calls for using a public relations campaign to point the international soccer body FIFA to Qatar’s dwindling cash reserves, making a case that the small Persian Gulf monarchy can’t afford to build the necessary infrastructure.

The blockade is already raising prices for infrastructure supplies and recruiting top officials to work in Qatar has been difficult, the slides point out. The outline concludes with the hope that the economic war will make it harder for Qatar to continue building stadiums and other assets needed to host the games: “If Qatar now spends its reserves on protecting the currency and domestic credit markets, there is less dry powder to fund the infrastructure spending.”

https://theintercept.com/2017/11/09/uae-qatar-oitaba-rowland-banque-havilland-world-cup/

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