Innovation and inclusivity top of the agenda at World Road Congress in Abu Dhabi

ABU DHABI, The newest innovations in road and transport technology were among the key topics discussed on the third day of the 26th World Road Congress Abu Dhabi 2019, taking place in the Middle East for the first time.

In the keynote sessions of the day, Nazir Alli, Founder and Former CEO of the South African National Roads Agency, and Guangzhe Chen, Global Director of Transport Global Practice Regional Director, South Asian Infrastructure Department of World Bank, addressed the delegates.

Speaking on the topic “Enhancing infrastructure for social cohesion and trade in Africa”, Alli said, “It is important to get the basics right, contextualised policies, a capable workforce, as well as pursuing smart strategies with direct external partners in the development of Africa’s infrastructure.”

Chen said, “Rural and urban connectivity will drive the investment agenda for sustainable transport. At the same time, it will require sustainable approaches. Decisions today can lock-in countries and cities on a sustainable or unsustainable development path.”

The impact of the newest technological innovations on the road and transport industry was a hot topic of discussion in Abu Dhabi.

Susanna Zammataro, Director-General of the International Road Federation, addressed the issue of maximising the use of automated vehicles on the roads.

Annelie Nylander, Chief Strategist of International Affairs, Swedish Transport Administration, and Miguel Caso Florez, Technical Director of PIARC, presented findings from their study on whether Electric Roads Systems, which charge vehicles while in motion, is the solution to the future.

In the foresight session on “Connected and Autonomous Mobility”, panellists asked whether our road networks are ready for these innovations.

In the second Special Project Session of the day, Martin Lamb, Director of Maple Consulting Ltd, oversaw PIARC’s study that focused on building sustainable energy roads.

The 26th World Road Congress Abu Dhabi 2019 will continue on Wednesday with an address from Jean-Luc di Paola-Galloni, Group Corporate Vice-President, Sustainable Development and External Affairs Valeo, on the “Collaborative research and smart roads mobility challenges” (a global suppliers’ approach).

Source: Emirates News Agency