UAE’s achievements in the field of Infrastructure in 2017.
Infrastructure is one of the main pillars in the UAE’s development achievements helping to ensure continued growth and to facilitate the fulfilment of the UAE Vision 2021.
This seeks to achieve a sustainable environment and infrastructure by 2021, and the UAE has set Key Performance Indicators to measure its targets, while making investments to achieve its goals.
Far-reaching urban planning initiatives such as Abu Dhabi’s Emirate-wide Vision 2030 and the Dubai Urban Development Master Plan 2020 are instrumental in achieving the UAE’s goals. Abu Dhabi continues to develop the infrastructure required for a sophisticated capital city and many new projects in Dubai are driven by its hosting of the World Expo in 2020.
The year 2017 has provided further examples of how the country is managing to make these goals a reality, as shown in the summary below.
January The infrastructure sector in Sharjah received about 30 percent of total government expenditures in the general budget of the emirate for 2017, some AED22 billion, the largest in the history of the emirate.
The increase in infrastructure spending is 7 percent more than in 2016.
Expo 2020 Dubai awarded 47 construction contracts worth AED11 billion (3.0 billion US$) in 2017 as preparations for the first World Expo in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia continue to gather pace.
A further 98 non-construction contracts, totalling more than AED360 million ($98 million), were distributed throughout the year. These range from legal advisory services to event management and merchandising.
Construction included the third and final infrastructure package for the event’s support areas.
Other key awards in 2017 included the construction of the three Thematic Districts that will host the majority of the pavilions, as well as the public areas and the design, development and delivery of all temporary architecture and infrastructure required to stage the event.
February ADNOC Distribution announced the building of the Highest Capacity NGV-Enabled Service Station to offer alternative low-emissions fuels. The new station will raise the number of NGV-enabled service stations in Abu Dhabi emirate to 31 by the end of the year.
March It was announced that Abu Dhabi Airport would be declared to be among the world’s largest airports by 2019, with the capacity to accommodate 30 million passengers per year.
Dubai was ranked fifth on the list of the world’s most competitive and attractive maritime clusters, according to an international survey conducted by Menon Business Economics Group.
Dubai progressed from ranking seventh in 2015 among the future leading maritime capitals to becoming sixth in 2017 and from 11th in 2015 to 10th among the world’s largest shipping centres for 2017. Dubai is 12th in 2017 compared with 13th in 2015 in terms of maritime finance and law services, and progressed from 15th to 14th place in terms of maritime technology.
May H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Presidential Affairs and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Judicial Department, issued a Resolution creating a registry of wills and probate for non-Muslims, within the framework of the department’s efforts to establish an institutional infrastructure dedicated to tolerance.
June Abu Dhabi Ports and the Port of Fujairah signed a 35-year concession agreement, and announced the establishment of “Fujairah Terminals”, a new operational arm wholly owned by Abu Dhabi Ports.
July His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice president and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, unveiled the AED5bn Emirates Towers Business Park, the next phase of the strategic development of infrastructure that is required for the UAE to meet its growth aspirations.
Sheikh Mohammed also launched Dubai Food Park, the latest addition to Dubai Wholesale City, which will be developed at a cost of AED5.5 billion, seeking to enhance Dubai’s position as a leading regional hub for food trade and re-export of foodstuffs.
August A number of major infrastructure and developmental enterprises have been inaugurated in the east of the UAE including a AED150 million project on developing and completing the network of roads linking East Coast cities via the Khor Fakkan West Ring Road as well as the road linking Sheikh Khalifa Highway in Fujairah and Khatam Malaha and the E99, or the East Coast Road.
Dr. Abdullah bin Mohammed Belhaif Al Nuaimi, Minister of Infrastructure Development and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Sheikh Zayed Housing Programme, signed two contracts on the construction and maintenance of the Al Montazi Residential Complex in the Mohamed bin Zayed district of Ajman, valued at around AED1 billion, with the China State Construction Engineering Company Middle East, and Dabco Construction.
September The Zayed Housing Programme completed 48% of its Martyrs Residential Project in Umm al-Qaiwain, which includes 232 residential units, at a cost of approximately AED324 million.
The Abu Dhabi Department of Municipal Affairs and Transport, DMAT, and Abu Dhabi Public Services Company, Musanada, began a project to carry out internal road and infrastructure projects in Shakhbut City, costing AED277m, which are due for completion in the first quarter of 2019.
The World Economic Forum revealed that the UAE topped the Arab World, and ranked 17th globally, in its Global Competitiveness Report.
The 2017-2018 report monitored 137 economies and ranked them based on performance according to 114 indicators grouped within the 12 main categories that included institutions, infrastructure, health and primary education, labour market efficiency and others.
October The Dubai Airport Freezone Authority, DAFZA, partnered with Dell EMC on the “DAFZA Cloud” project, which aims to provide transformative ICT services to all stakeholders. DAFZA’s strategy is geared towards leveraging frontline ICT solutions to develop and deliver innovative accelerated digital services, in line with the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.
The combined value of the Expo 2020-related development projects has touched AED 121 billion (US$33 billion) so far, as the UAE begins the three-year countdown for the event, which is due to open on October 20th, 2020. These projects include major upgrades to the transport infrastructure, such as the expansion of the road networks and extension of the Dubai Metro to connect the Dubai Expo 2020 site, at Al Maktoum International Airport, DWC, with the rest of the main city of Dubai, as well as various mixed-use projects.
The Follow-up Committee of the Initiatives of the UAE President approved funding for a number of infrastructure and urban development projects in various emirates at a total cost of AED1.2 billion.
The committee approved funding for the Sheikh Khalifa Central Hospital in Fujairah, a project valued at AED865.9 million. New road projects were also approved, includes the funding of a number of internal roads and parking areas in residential complexes in Ra’s al-Khaimah and Fujairah valued at AED12.4 million.