Gulf Traffic launched as Mideast transport investment heightens
A vertical conference and exhibition (Confex) for the Middle East's traffic and transport industry has recently been launched. Backed by Dubai Municipality and the International Road Federation, the three-day Gulf Traffic 2002 event will be held at Dubai's Crowne Plaza Hotel, from 26-29 October 2002.
"Originally planned as an exhibition bringing together international suppliers to the traffic and transport sector, the event has evolved into a Confex, incorporating a segment-specific conference largely at industry demand," said Jessica Sutherland, general manager of IIR Exhibitions & Conferences, the event's organizer.
"We expect more than 350 Middle East and international delegates from the transport sector to attend the multi-speaker conference which will have three distinctive segments dedicated to mass transit, with particular emphasis on rail networks, intelligent traffic systems (ITS) and urban planning," said Sutherland.
According to IIR, ongoing multibillion dollar investments on the Middle East's second phase road development coupled with strong interest for new technology, which can improve road safety, and a renewed political will to drive rail investment are the driving forces behind Gulf Traffic 2002.
"A new Saudi law on railways is expected to be passed soon to precipitate the creation of a significant private rail network in the Kingdom," said Sutherland. "Saudi Arabia has also just signed contracts for road projects worth over $400 million and Dubai is expected to spend $817 million over the next three years, on road development.
"Dubai has recently announced its intention to create a railway system to combat road traffic which is estimated to triple by 2017. Road traffic pressure has become an issue in every major city in the Middle East and this conference will seek to offer solutions to the problems."
A main aspect of the conference will be road safety as there have been over 14,000 road related deaths in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) during the past 20 years. "Fatal road accidents in the UAE in 2000 cost the government four billion Emirati dirhams. This statistic has resulted in all Middle East governments looking to invest in preventative measures and cost effective solutions," said Sutherland. — (menareport.com)
© 2002 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)
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