UITP has announced the opening of a new office in Casablanca on the occasion of the UITP MENA Assembly in the Moroccan city.
UITP’s MENA Assembly, which took place this week (February 16-17), was the Association’s first ever event in Morocco and only its second in the Maghreb. The event focused on the issue of financial and economic governance and was attended by more than 130 transport professionals from the Mediterranean countries and the Middle-East. In addition to Morocco, it highlighted the ambitious projects that are being implemented in the region such as in Algeria (nine cities are either operating or constructing tramway networks), Saudi Arabia and Qatar.
Since UITP’s first event in the Maghreb in 2008 in Tunis, the region has seen exponential growth in public transport projects with the opening of new tramways in Casablanca, Rabat, Oran, Constantine and Algiers to cite just a few examples.
UITP’s liaison office in Casablanca will be in charge of organising and providing training, studies and seminars to public transport professionals in the region as well as raising the international profile of sustainable mobility projects in the Maghreb.
“Morocco has been actively involved in regional development in recent years through institutional reform, investment in large infrastructure projects or financial frameworks to support local projects, reflecting the strong political will at the highest level in Morocco to support public transport and sustainable mobility,” commented Mohamed Mezghani, UITP Deputy Secretary General.
“As one of Africa’s largest cities, economically and demographically, Casablanca is also set to benefit from an extensive public transport development plan in the years to come and is as such the ideal place for a UITP office in the region,” Mr. Mezghani concluded.
UITP now counts 12 liaison and regional offices across the globe in addition to its main office in Brussels. UITP set up its MENA Division, combined with the opening of an office in Dubai, in 2005.
Find out more: public transport in the MENA region will also be debated at UITP’s World Congress & Exhibition in Milan in the session ‘Growth and governance in the MENA region’. With many cities in the region facing population growth (often in urban areas designed mainly for personal transport), this session will look at the importance of legislation and the regulation of public transport as a solution for urban development. Find out more: http://bit.ly/1zKzKru