The Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (Sagia) plans to spend $100bn on developing 19 transport projects over the next 10 years.

It will build five ports, three airports, three railways, three major highways, and five logistics centres as part of the plan.

Saudi Arabia is also planning to build a number of economic cities, including King Abdullah Economic City which, Sagia says, could contribute an additional 86 million to 129 million tonnes of cargo traffic each year.

Sagia says it plans to increase capacity at the kingdom’s ports and attract port operators. Jeddah Islamic Port alone could increase capacity by 30 to 35 per cent.

The kingdom already has a number of large-scale projects under way, including the expansion of Jeddah airport and Medina airport.

In April, Saudi Arabia’s General Authority of Civil Aviation received bids for two major construction contracts on the expansion of King Abdulaziz International airport in Jeddah.  

Eight consortiums are prequalified to bid for the $1.5bn first phase of the expansion of Medina airport (MEED 1:6:10).

The authority is inviting air operators to help drive the expansion of the aviation infrastructure.

On the rail side, Saudi Arabia is developing the North-South mineral railway that is due for completion by the end of 2010, the $7bn Haramain high-speed railway, Jeddah metro and Mecca monorail.

Sagia plans to invest heavily in the kingdom’s roads to accommodate the growth in traffic that is expected as the economic cities develop.