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Bahrain-Qatar Causeway ‘a strategic project for GCC’

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MANAMA: The Qatar-Bahrain Causeway (QBC) is a 40-kilometer causeway in the Middle East that connects two countries Qatar and Bahrain. It will be the world’s longest fixed causeway once completed. The link, which will connect northern Qatar with Bahrain’s eastern coast, will be a natural extension of the King Fahd Causeway, which connects Bahrain and Saudi Arabia.

The QBC was one of the most important strategic and development initiatives to promote economic development in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), deepen ties between the peoples of the two countries in particular, and accelerate GCC cooperation and integration.

Bahrain has backed the project because of its belief in the project’s economic goals and strategic importance to both sides. A collaborative entity was founded in 2005 to commence the project, and it was tasked with managing, maintaining, and operating the causeway, as well as investing in its infrastructure, under a Memorandum of Understanding signed in 2005.

The importance of the Bahrain Causeway Institution continuing work on establishing designs and operational plans was made apparent in a statement by the Undersecretary for Land Transportation and which was posted on March 21.

The project will have a significant positive influence on boosting the two countries’ strong and historical ties, as well as their goals for rapprochement and travel convenience, he added.

In November 2009 it was announced that construction work on the QBC will commence in the first quarter of 2010. The project was delayed because of the decision to include an adjacent rail platform in the project. Construction of the causeway is expected to be complete by 2014 and that of the railway platform by 2015. After completion, the QBC will reduce the travel time between Qatar and Bahrain from 5h to 30mins.

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