Bahrain has unveiled its new strategic projects plan which will see over 20 new projects coming up across the kingdom at an investment of more than $30 billion.
The new multi-year projects represent one of Bahrain’s most significant ever injections of capital investment and will drive the Economic Recovery Plan, designed to enhance the long-term competitiveness of the country’s economy, and stimulate post pandemic growth, said Deputy Prime Minister Shaikh Khalid bin Abdulla Al Khalifa, while announcing the plan.
Comprising 22 signature projects across key sectors – including telecommunications, tourism, education, manufacturing, and health – the plan will also contribute towards the realisation of Bahrain’s Economic Vision 2030.
New projects include the creation of five cities situated on newly constructed islands, increasing Bahrain’s total land area by more than 60 per cent. Fasht Al Jarim, the largest of those planned, will span 183 sq km providing a residential, logistics, and tourism hub that will host a new airport.
Among the projects, the new 25-km, four-lane King Hamad Causeway will facilitate cross border trade and travel with Saudi Arabia and the wider GCC, and strengthen political, strategic, economic, and cultural ties.
Within Bahrain, a new metro system extending across 109 km will connect all major population hubs in the country. The 20-station first phase of the metro will run from Bahrain International Airport to Seef area, linking both to Manama and the Diplomatic Area.
Transport connectivity will be complemented by technology investment in land and sea fibre optics. Next generation cloud-computing services will be supported by significant investment in several new data centre projects.
The new Sports City will house the largest sports stadium in Bahrain and a multi-purpose indoor sports arena, making the kingdom a centre for events, leisure, and sport. The Bahrain International Exhibition and Convention Centre will be the largest ‘Conference City’ in the Middle East; and ‘Tourist city’, a series of resorts in the southwest of Bahrain, will enhance the kingdom’s status as a global visitor destination, officials said.
The new projects announced under the Strategic Projects Plan will build upon the kingdom’s 2015 infrastructure plan that delivered the new Bahrain International Airport terminal, the Line 6 expansion of Aluminium Bahrain (Alba), the world’s largest aluminium smelter ex-China, and the 350,000-bpd (barrel per day) AB-4 Pipeline between Bahrain and Saudi Arabia replacing the 230,000-bpd link, he added.
Following the announcement, Shaikh Salman bin Khalifa Al Khalifa, the Minister of Finance and National Economy, said: “Bahrain is emerging from the pandemic with a bold ambition that looks beyond economic recovery to a more prosperous future. This transformative investment will raise education and lifestyle opportunities for young people and provide quality healthcare, homes, and career paths for them as they progress into adulthood.”
“New and existing industries will be stimulated and private sector growth in the tourism and entertainment sectors will be driven forward by infrastructure and telecommunications investment, with connectivity both within the kingdom and overseas elevated for the efficient movement of goods, services, and people,” he stated.
“The Strategic Projects Plan is an investment not only in Bahrain’s physical infrastructure but in the future prosperity of the kingdom’s people,” he added.