Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum toured the 'MENA Transport Congress and Exhibition 2022’ on Sunday at Dubai World Trade Centre
Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum toured the 'MENA Transport Congress and Exhibition 2022’ on Sunday at Dubai World Trade Centre Image Credit: Twitter/@DXBMediaOffice

Dubai: Public transport experts, academicians, government officials, professionals and participants from 48 countries have gathered for ‘MENA Transport Congress and Exhibition 2022’ being held Sunday to Tuesday at Dubai World Trade Centre.

Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai, Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Dubai Media Council, opened the event’s fourth edition.

The event is organised by Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) in collaboration with the Belgium-based International Association of Public Transport (UITP). The three-day event has brought together heads of government departments, 1,000 participants and 73 speakers from 19 countries. About 40 entities from 17 countries are taking part in the accompanying exhibition.

Sheikh Ahmed was received at Dubai World Trade Centre, the venue of the event, by Mattar Mohammed Al Tayer, Director-General and Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of the Roads and Transport Authority, and Khalid Al-Hogail, President of the UITP, who briefed Sheikh Ahmed on public transport projects in the region including Route 2020 of Dubai Metro, Dubai 2040 Urban Master Plan, Bus Operation and Maintenance outsourcing in Dubai, Al Bahrain Metro, Al Riyadh Metro, Bus Service in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, BRT Buses in Jordan, Monorail, Metro and High-Speed Railways in Egypt and BRT Buses in Morocco.

Organisers said the congress, which was cancelled in 2020, is aimed at bringing together “expert voices to move forward the debate on urban mobility at a crucial time for the transport sector.”

High on the congress agenda are: Evolution of autonomous vehicles and technologies; use of AI (artificial intelligence) and Big Data in public transport; dynamic on-demand public transport services; financial sustainability post-pandemic, livable cities, mobility-as-a-service (MaaS), non-motorised travel, safety and security, service excellence, smart governance, talent management, smart mobility, and technology enablers.

40 exhibitors from 19 countries are showcasing their transport solutions at the event Image Credit: Angel Tesorero/Gulf News

Global platform

Mattar Al Tayer, RTA director-general and chairman of the Board of Executive Directors, said: “The importance of the event is underlined by its role as an interactive global platform that brings together officials, industry leaders, policymakers, legislators, developers, consultants, operators, manufacturers and all public transport stakeholders from all over the world.”

He added: “Through this event, we are looking forward to finding sustainable solutions and launching innovative projects that serve public transport commuters and offer them smooth mobility while sticking to high standards of health and safety. This is particularly important under the exceptional circumstances forced by the COVID-19 pandemic on various sectors including public transport.”

Growing success

Wiebe Wakker, a Sustainable Adventurer, delivered a speech highlighting his experience of travelling by an electric vehicle to Australia and the challenges he faced during the trip. He also talked about his experience of living in the UAE for three months and the key lessons learned, as well as his journey from the UAE to Sydney, Australia.

Wakker spoke about his journey by train from the Dutch city of Amsterdam to Dubai. He touched on some of his experiences during the trip in some Arab countries, and how they have enriched his life. He praised the UAE’s infrastructure development, the quality of its roads and transportation infrastructure, and the smooth movement between cities in the country.

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Hackathon contest

During the event, Sheikh Ahmed honoured the winners of the ‘4th Transport Hackathon’ for university and college students. The contest was held recently in cooperation with Cisco. The competition saw the participation of 60 students from 21 universities across the UAE.

Mohammed Obaid Al Mulla, RTA Board Member, said: “The students presented practical and innovative ideas and solutions. They worked intensively over three days to find solutions and propose projects to tackle the challenges facing public transport.”


First place: Scooty App

An app to make travelling with e-scooters a safer, faster, and a more sustainable experience. It has a ScootAssist to monitor the scooter's speed and the rider's behaviour. It has a virtual map of the safe route for riders’ scooters on the metaverse.

By Nora Abdlhallem, Noora Al Hammadi, Mohamed Firas Adil, Sultan Abu Ghazal, Elnura Zhalieva, Muhamed Shajahan, Mariam Elkhatib, Mohamed Nihaal, Judi Dairawan, and Zahra Al Ameri

Second place: Salem App

An app to monitor the health and safety of delivery personnel using phone sensors, GPS, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to ensure safe driving behaviour is adhered to.

By Sened Abraham, Saif Alramahi, Joel D’Souza, Sudais Javed, Muhammad Uzair Khattak, Sarah Zahir Syeda, Dima Ahmad, Noureldine Ahmed, and Chandrashekhar Ramaprasad

Third place: Steady App

An app to ensure the smooth mobility of People of Determination in public transport. Its sensors determine their whereabouts and automatically transmits text messages to the staff of public transport stations to keep them notified so that they can sure their safe mobility inside the station and public transport vehicles.

By Selam Mekonen, Hassan Mohammed, Urooj Zahid, Joshua Brown, Afshan Majid, Reham Shaikh, and Sana Abouelnour.


Later, Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed, accompanied by Al Tayer, opened the accompanying exhibition. The event features the participation of 40 entities from 17 countries showcasing the latest solutions in the industry.