Minister: Riyadh-based new airport and national carrier in pipeline
Minister of Transport and Logistics Eng. Saleh Al-Jasser said that the National Strategy for Transport and Logistics aims to establish a new airport and a new national carrier in the capital city of Riyadh.
The focus of Saudi Arabian Airlines will be in Jeddah, he said while emphasizing that the strategy aims to have 250 new destinations and provide transportation of 330 million passengers.
Attending “In the Picture” program on Rotana Khalijia Channel, Al-Jasser said that the Land Bridge Project is receiving attention from the Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman. “An international consortium will be assigned to implement this project, which will make a qualitative leap in the logistics sector,” he said.The minister said that the first passenger service of the North Train will start from Al-Qurayyat by the end of this month, and it would be instrumental in having the rail connectivity reaching up to the Jordanian borders. Citizens can transport their cars via the train for the first time, he pointed out.
Al-Jasser said that there are several administrative reforms that were initiated by the National Strategy for Transport and Logistics Services, and these included the establishment of an independent authority for roads. Also, an independent authority for logistics services will be established in the future, he said while noting that the Kingdom’s project in the transport and logistics sector is to consolidate the Kingdom’s position as a global logistics center.
The strategy aims to make the Kingdom among the top 10 countries in the Logistics Performance Index. “In the middle of this year, the roads' jurisdiction will be bifurcated between the Ministry of Transport and the municipalities. The roads within the urban area will be under the jurisdiction of the municipality while the roads outside the urban area will belong to the Ministry of Transport and Logistics,” he said.
Al-Jasser pointed out that the new operating model for road construction depends on a number of things, including the necessity for the road and its economic impact. Any new road must achieve one of the objectives of the national strategies, he said.
“The Kingdom’s index of road quality has improved significantly during the past period, and we aim to reach the sixth place globally in road quality by 2030,” he said while noting that this will be through a number of initiatives, including the Road Code, which ensures the unification of standards for road construction and maintenance according to the highest quality standards.
The minister noted that road accident deaths were up to 28 cases per 100,000 people during the past years, and it has decreased until reaching 13.3 cases at present. “We aim to bring it down to less than eight cases by 2030,” he added.