• Sustainability challenges will be hard for emerging and developing economies to address in transport sector
  • World Bank economist says there are limited substitution opportunities in fossil fuel used in individual mobility

Transport is the only sector of the world economy where demand for fossil fuel is set to rise, creating economic and sustainability challenges that will be hard for emerging and developing economies to address, the MEED Mena Rail & Metro Summit was told on 5 October.

“Transport will continue to use fossil fuel and its use of fossil fuel will increase,” said Andreas Kopp, lead economist for transport and information technology at the Washington-based World Bank. “And despite progress being made (in increasing transport efficiency), developing countries are increasing their motorisation radically.”

Kopp said there are limited substitution opportunities in fossil fuel used in individual mobility. The challenge for policymakers in the Middle East is intensified by the low transport fuel prices.

“Cities with low transport costs will have a larger area and will be less dense,” Kopp said. He added that sharp increases in the cost of carbon-based fuels will be needed to contain demand to the extent needed by global carbon emission reduction plans.

The 11th MEED Mena Rail & Metro Summit is being held under the patronage of Abdullah Belhaif al-Nuaimi, Minister of Public Works and chairman of the Federal Transport Authority of the UAE. The event is hosted by the Federal Transport Authority – Land & Maritime. EY, Hitachi and Louis Berger are gold sponsors; Alstom, Bentley and Comply Serve are silver sponsors; DLA Piper, Parsons and Siemens are bronze sponsors; Hill International is conference sponsor; Vossloh is lunch sponsor; Arep, Soldata and Lafarge are exhibitors; and Simmons & Simmons is our official WiFi sponsor.

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