Roads are a testament to any country's development. We all know the fact that roads are a basic part of any country’s transportation structure. Saudi Arabia maintains the second-best place in the Middle East Region in terms of road quality and falls by one position from 17th to 18thposition in the entire world. The country has seen several improvements in the recent years that have resulted in a solid structure. These developments contribute to maintaining the strong position in the GCI. The Global Competitiveness Report (GCI report) judges the competitiveness of 144 countries in terms of economic development, quality of infrastructure, roads, overall infrastructure and financial systems.[irp]
The GCI in its volume of 2012-2013 has ranked Saudi Arabia at the 12th number in respect of the quality of roads. Saudi Arabia preserves the 2nd best place in the Middle East, coming after Qatar and it falls by one position from 17th to 18th entirely from last year. The report states that the country has completed much progressive work in recent years that have resulted in a solid institutional structure. The roads network in KSA is undergoing a constant upbringing for many years, the quality is being improved and the network is being expanded as well. It can be easily noticed that especially on the main routes across the Kingdom, the maximum portion of the roads network maintains the highest standard. The King Fahd causeway that links Bahrain and Eastern region of Saudi Arabia is a most appropriate example of the roads built in KSA. This road was built in 80’s, it is 25 KM long and a major portion is constructed by bridging over the sea. Constructed with a cost of 1.2 Billion US Dollars, the causeway serves almost 45000 vehicles per day on an average (the number of vehicles increases up to 60,000 on the weekends).[irp]
It is a four-lane road along with two other lanes for emergency parking. Out of the total length of 25km, 12.43 km of the road comprises of bridges those are built in the sea. It is one of the favorite tourist destinations of the region. The border area comprises of two worth seeing mosques, two states of the art restaurants having a height of 65m and offices of the concerned authorities and coastguard towers as well.
Switzerland is keeping the top position overall for the 4th successive year. Saudi Arabia is ranked 18 and the United Arab Emirates is ranked 24. The top 20 positions of the countries are given as follows:
Source: Global Competitiveness Report