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RTA announces finalists of Dubai World Challenge for Self-Driving Transport

Mattar Mohammed Al Tayer, Director-General, Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of the Roads and Transport Authority, RTA, announced that 13 local and global organisations have qualified for the finals of the Dubai World Challenge for Self-Driving Transport in the categories of Leading Companies and Academic Institutions.

The second edition of the challenge is devoted to Self-driving Logistics Services, including ground transport and drones.

“Despite the challenges forced by Covid-19 worldwide, the second edition has seen an increase in the number of submissions received. Some 31 nominations have been received under Leading Companies and Academic Institutions categories, which exceeds the target by 200 percent,” Al Tayer announced.

“Following the decision of the international judges’ panel chaired by Dr. Stephen Schladover- an international expert and Chair of the Judges Panel of the Dubai World Challenge for Self-Driving Transport, seven global companies have qualified for the final stage of the Challenge in the category of Leading Companies. These are Neolix from China; Life Touch from Italy; and DG World from the UAE; Arti from Austria; Twins Wheel from France; Yandex from Russia, and Kiwi Bot from the United States,” he revealed.

“Equally, six local universities have qualified for the finals. These are New York University Abu Dhabi, Khalifa University of Science, Technology and Research, Rochester Institute of Technology in Dubai, American University of Sharjah, University of Sharjah, and the University of Dubai.

“This global competition aims to expand the use of driverless transport across many fields and encourage leading companies in this particular field to tackle the existing mobility challenges, such as the first and last-mile, traffic congestions, and low public transport ridership. Self-driving transport has become a key pillar of the RTA’s strategy, and we are determined to achieve our goals through a host of creative initiatives capable of making self-driving transport a reality on the ground in Dubai,” he added.

“Designating Self-Driving Logistics Services as a theme for the second edition of the Dubai World Challenge for Self-Driving Transport stems from the RTA’s endeavours to support the logistical sector in Dubai. Studies indicated that Dubai hosts nearly 6,000 shipping/forwarding companies. About 64,000 trucks of various sizes make about 306,000 trips per day, accounting for about 13 percent of the total daily mobility trips in Dubai,” he stated.

“Since its announcement, the second edition of the challenge attracted massive interest from a wide range of international institutions expressing their intent to make submissions and showcase their projects and initiatives in the field of self-driving transport,” said Ahmed Hashim Bahrozyan, CEO of Public Transport Agency, Chairman of the Organising Committee of the Dubai World Congress for Self-Driving Transport.

“The finalists were selected based on several criteria including credibility, vision, innovation, skills and relevant experience as well as the commercial operability, value-added, and the relevance to the needs of Dubai and the UAE.

“Over the next stage, the efficiency of projects and initiatives of qualified local companies and academic institutions will be tested at the testing site of the Dubai Silicon Oasis. Tests will be conducted next year according to the set plan and timetable at the highest international standards. The results of these tests will be decisive in reaching the final selection of the winners,” said Bahrozyan in conclusion.

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