Minister of Transport HE Jassim bin Saif Al Sulaiti underlined that the ministry had developed a huge and resilient program for the advancement of the transport sector to keep pace with all future variables and requirements, most importantly the obligations of hosting the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.
Speaking to Qatar News Agency (QNA), HE the Minister of Transport said that hosting the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 has contributed significantly to accelerating the pace of sustainable development processes taking place the country, in line with achieving the pillars of Qatar National Vision 2030.
"From the moment Qatar was declared winner to host the World Cup, all efforts were directed to provide an honorable global model in all aspects that reflects the great potential of the country in hosting major sporting events, while at the same time leaving a real legacy for future generations," HE the Minister said.
Since the transport sector constitutes a fundamental pillar in the development and urban development processes in the country, and at the same time serves the requirements of hosting the World Cup, the Ministry worked to develop a huge program for this vital sector characterized by flexibility to keep pace with all future variables and requirements, HE the Minister continued.
His Excellency explained that the program included the development of preliminary designs for developing roads and maintaining their sustainability, in addition to supervising the development of infrastructure for the transport sector and its facilities such as ports and airports.
His Excellency added that the Ministry has implemented an integrated program to develop the public bus infrastructure, which included the inauguration of eight bus stations and four depots, in addition to bus parking lots in more than 1700 locations, and four 'Park & Ride' parking lots.
HE the Minister of Transport underlined that the Public Bus Infrastructure Program is one of the most environmentally friendly programs in the world. It lays the foundations for a complete transformation to a transportation system powered by the clean, environmentally friendly electric energy. The program also gains special importance as it coincides with the hosting of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.
HE the Minister noted that the works carried out by the Ministry of Transport led to the establishment of an integrated and sustainable transport network in the country, to form an interconnected transport unit that includes public transit bus systems, and Doha Metro and Lusail Trams network, supported by advanced infrastructure and using the latest international technology.
His Excellency added that this huge program has started to bear fruit and has turned into a tangible reality that will put the country in advanced ranks globally in terms of the transport sector and the services provided to citizens, residents and visitors; thus, supporting the requirements of sustainable development in the country.
He pointed to the inauguration of 'Sila Operation Center' which aims at connecting public transport in the State of Qatar within an integrated network, offering the public with the smartest transport options.
In regard to maritime transport, HE Minister Jassim bin Saif Al Sulaiti explained that the comprehensive redevelopment carried out by the Ministry for Doha Port will enhance the country's leadership in the cruise ship sector in accordance with the highest international standards, thus consolidating the country's position in tourism. The development of Doha Port will contribute to absorbing the expected growth in the number of cruises during the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.
Speaking about the civil aviation sector and its preparations to host the global tournament, His Excellency pointed to many important developments in this regard, such as increasing the number of air routes in the airspace of the State of Qatar and modernizing the devices and systems used in air navigation, in order to accommodate the large air traffic expected during the tournament, in addition to providing all necessary requirements to host this event.
His Excellency also noted the adoption of the latest weather forecasting and monitoring systems. In addition, many meteorological centers in the State had been developed to ensure more modern and accurate services.
HE the Minister referred to the opening of Mukaynis Meteorological Center which includes the first weather radar of its kind in the country. The center provides services to all major events, most importantly the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.
In a related context, HE the Minister of Transport said that the expansion plan of Hamad International Airport will strengthen its position as a global travel hub, achieve higher levels of excellence and sophistication, and enhance travel experiences through it by upgrading operations, providing a unique experience for all visitors, in addition to accommodating the growing destinations network of the national carrier "Qatar Airways", in order to meet the requirements of the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
In terms of coordinating efforts for the hosting of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, HE the Minister of Transport noted that the Ministry, in coordination with the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy, developed a plan to implement transport demand management, and to test the effectiveness of this plan, which seeks to reduce road traffic that will be associated with the World Cup events as well as for the post-tournament period.
One of the most important objectives of the World Cup plan is to avoid an expensive infrastructure for a brief time - during the tournament period, reduce the need for private transport, reduce traffic congestion and delays, improve the effectiveness of existing infrastructure and quality of services, and enhance the efficiency of the public transport system, he noted, adding that the plan also aims to encourage the use of safe and environmentally friendly public transport and encourage more sustainable trip patterns using different public transport as well as walking and cycling; in addition to encouraging change in job sites and moving them away from busier areas during peak or the World Cup period.
HE the Minister added that joint teams have also been activated with the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy to ensure the effectiveness and success of transport plans during the World Cup, and to ensure the applicability of all other transport systems, in an integrated manner in terms of coordination and identification of all roles and responsibilities of strategic partners such as the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy, the Public Works Authority (Ashghal), the Ministry of Interior, Mowasalat (Karwa), and Qatar Rail.
At the end of his remarks to QNA, HE the Minister of Transport emphasized the importance of these achievements as they will coincide with the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022; expressing his belief that the public transport network in Qatar is a key pillar for the success of this global event and will allow visitors to use different types of transport that will give them an exceptional experience that is safer, more connected and streamlined.