The 12th edition of Middle East Rail, the largest railway industry event across the Middle East, North Africa, South and Central Asian region, officially opened today at Dubai International Convention Centre.
Dr. Abdulla Belhaif Al Nuaimi, Minister of Infrastructure Development and Chairman, Federal Transport Authority – Land & Maritime, inaugurated the exhibition, where over 290 regional and international railway operators, suppliers and contractors are showcasing the best solutions and innovations.
A high-level delegation, including GCC transport ministers, as well as senior officials from regional rail authorities, accompanied Dr. Abdulla Belhaif Al Nuaimi during the tour of the exhibition.
The show is being held under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, in partnership with the Ministry of Infrastructure Development and the Federal Transport Authority – Land & Maritime.
Delivering a keynote speech at the conference, Dr. Abdulla Al Nuaimi said that the UAE has established itself as a global player in the transport infrastructure sector – a sector that plays an important role in any nation’s progress. He also expressed his pleasure at the exponential growth in the number of participants as well as the keen interest of key decision-makers in the railway industry.
He pointed out that the UAE Government has developed a clear vision as well as a carefully-planned strategy to play a leadership role in the field of rail transport infrastructure. This will be achieved through regional and international collaboration, developing and re-shaping policies, and enacting laws to promote efficiency as well as safety in this vital sector.
Earlier this month, the UAE Cabinet approved a new Federal Railway Law that provides a regulatory framework for future development of railways. The new law is expected to pave the way for private sector participation in railway projects in the Emirates.
Dr. Al Nuaimi said, “The UAE, thanks to its visionary leadership, is rapidly moving towards further developing a strong infrastructure in various field. It has achieved tangible results in this effort and advanced positions in the Global Competitiveness Index, where it was ranked fourth in the quality of infrastructure.”
“We are keen to learn about international best practices and to benefit from international expertise, which we believe plays an important role in sustainable development, especially in light of the transformation towards an economy based on knowledge and innovation.”
He pointed out that for over a decade, Middle East Rail has helped shaped the regional rail industry through knowledge sharing, educating the market and facilitating influential meetings. The show serves as a platform for industry experts to identify problems, propose solutions, collaborate and harness innovative technologies in the railway sector.