A planned 2,100 km passenger and cargo network connecting the UAE and Saudi Arabia will be ready by December 2021. Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News

DUBAI: The United Arab Emirates will have a rail link with Saudi Arabia by the end of December 2021, a senior tranport official said on Monday.

"By the end of December 2021 we will have a connection between us and the Saudis," Abdullah Salem Al Kathiri, director general of the Federal Authority for Land and Marine Transport, told a conference in Dubai.

The planned 2,100 km (1,300 mile) passenger and cargo network connecting the six Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states was pushed back at least three years to 2021.

Several projects across the region had been put on hold as Gulf oil producers struggle with low crude prices and rising budget deficits.