Dubai public transport ridership hits 275.77 million in the first half

Metro riders accounted for over a third of Dubai’s public transport ridership during the first half. (AFP)
Updated 05 August 2017
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Dubai public transport ridership hits 275.77 million in the first half

DUBAI: Metro riders accounted for over a third of Dubai’s public transport ridership during the first half, which rose to 275.77 million from 273.45 a year ago, the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) said on Saturday.
The figures translate to about 1.5 million daily commuters in Dubai’s public transport systems including the Dubai Metro, the Dubai Tram, buses, taxis and various marine transport modes, the RTA added.
“The public transport means have now become the backbone of people mobility in various parts of Dubai, and the preferred transit option for a huge segment of Dubai residents and visitors,” Mattar Al Al-Tayer, the RTA director-general and chairman, said in a statement.
During the six months to June, Dubai Metro’s Red Line — which runs between Rashidiya and Jebel Ali — serviced 64.37 million riders while 36.18 million commuters used the Green Line, which runs between Dubai Creek and Al Qusais.
The Dubai Tram recorded 3.08 million passengers in the first half, compared with the 2.53 million year-ago figures.
About 87.79 million passengers meanwhile took cabs — including those from the Dubai Taxi, the Hala Taxi as well as franchised taxis — during the first half, or about 3 percent higher than the 85.19 million registered during the same period of 2016.
Public buses served 77.69 million riders during the first half, up from 69.92 million a year ago, while marine transport services ferried 6.64 million passengers as of June.


Dubai has undertaken major projects to improve transport facilities, and has resulted in higher public transport ridership to 16 percent in 2016 from only about 6 percent a decade earlier.
“If we add taxis, the share would shoot to as high as 24 percent,” Al-Tayer said, and added that the emirate wanted to push the ridership to 20 percent by 2020 and 30 percent by 2030.
Dubai Metro’s Green line is undergoing a Dh10 billion, 15-kilometer extension in preparation for the emirate’s hosting of the Expo 2020 where an estimated 25 million visitors are expected to arrive for the event.
The seven-station extension is scheduled to enter into service in May 2020, five months before Expo 2020 opens.
“Achieving smooth and accessible mobility in the emirate hinges on providing integrated solutions in terms of improving and broadening roads network and crossings, and upgrading various components of mass transit systems such as the metro, tram, buses and water transport means,” Al-Tayer said.


Japan: G20 summit to debate trade including WTO reform

Updated 36 sec ago
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Japan: G20 summit to debate trade including WTO reform

  • Japan, which chairs this year’s G20 gatherings, will take a neutral stance in the US-China trade row
  • More ‘concrete’ discussions on trade policy will take place at the G20 Osaka summit
TOKYO: Substantial discussions on trade, including reform of the World Trade Organization, will likely take place at a summit of Group of 20 major economies next week in Osaka, a senior Japanese finance ministry official said on Wednesday.
Japan, which chairs this year’s G20 gatherings, will take a neutral stance in the US-China trade row and urge countries to resolve tensions with a multilateral framework, said Masatsugu Asakawa, vice finance minister for international affairs.
“With regard to differences (on trade) between the United States and China, Japan of course won’t take sides. We will also not take any steps that go against WTO rules,” said Asakawa, who oversaw the G20 finance leaders’ gathering earlier this month.
“Japan will continue to take a multilateral approach in promoting free trade,” he told a news conference.
China and the United States, the world’s two largest economies, are in the middle of a costly trade dispute that has pressured financial markets and damaged the world economy.
Markets are focused on whether US President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping can narrow their differences when they sit down at the G20 summit.
The bitter trade war has forced the International Monetary Fund to cut its global growth forecast and overshadowed the G20 meetings that conclude with the Osaka summit on June 28-29.
At the finance leaders’ gathering, the G20 issued a communique warning that trade and geopolitical tensions have “intensified” and that policymakers stood ready to take further action against such risks.
“The macro-economic impact (of the trade tensions) is an issue of concern,” Asakawa said, conceding it took considerable time for G20 finance ministers and central bank heads to agree on their communique’s language on trade.
More “concrete” discussions on trade policy will take place at the G20 Osaka summit, he added.
The row over trade appeared to spread to currency policy when Trump criticized European Central Bank President Mario Draghi’s dovish comments as aimed at weakening the euro to give the region’s exports an unfair trade advantage.
Asakawa rebuffed the view the Bank of Japan’s massive stimulus program could also provoke the ire of Trump.
He also said the G20 shared an understanding that members would accept any exchange-rate moves driven by ultra-easy monetary policies as long as the measures are not directly aimed at manipulating currencies.
“The BOJ’s ultra-easy policy is aimed at beating deflation, not at manipulating exchange rates. That’s understood widely among the G20 economies,” he said.
Fears of the widening fallout from the trade war have heightened market expectations the US Federal Reserve will start cutting interest rates this year. Draghi said on Tuesday the ECB will ease again if inflation fails to accelerate.
The dovish tone of other central banks has piled pressure on the BOJ, though many analysts expect it to keep policy steady at least at this week’s rate review.