“A long planned $3 billion dollar bridge linking Bahrain and Qatar has been put on hold due to lack of funds”.
The headlines have been up for almost a decade for the future of the, “Qatar Bahrain Causeway”.https://lebanonglc.wordpress.com/2012/10/22/qatar-bahrain-causeway/Photo Click-through Lin
“Why is this bridge important and what can be accomplished”?
A brief overview on Qatar is that it’s an independent state in, “The Middle East”. It’s in the process of becoming part of the, “United Arab Emirate”. Qatar is also in the,” Arab League and the United Nations”. It is located between Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and the (UAE) Qatar is well known for its gas and oil industry. It has a very high (GDP) and continues to grow rapidly on the Eastern Side. So that was a very brief overview of Qatar and where it’s located.
(picture of Qatar map and borders)
Moreover, this bridge was to begin in 2001 and due to economics and as well as social circumstances Bahrain and Qatar delayed it until 2008. The expected completion of the bridge will be in late 2015. Over the past couple years Bahrain has had many protests going on within the region dealing with the Sunni and Shiite differences. Many blame this on the downfall economy because (GDP) has decreased and as well as other economic factors. https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/ba.html
Upon completion of this bridge nearly the whole coastline except for the (UAE) would be connected for trade. When this bridge is completed it will not only increase trade throughout the Middle East, but industrialize the western side of Qatar. This would make the state even stronger economically speaking. As of now the trade route for Bahrain and Qatar is difficult due to Saudi Arabia acting as a wall between the two regions. This in end leads to higher delivery expense when delivering by land.
One thing that is a primary factor in this Bridge building is, “Saudi Arabia”. The reason that the bridge is being built is to avoid going through Saudi Arabia’s territory and directly having a route to Bahrain. Qatar is having a hard time trading with the (UAE) because of the land that customs of Qatar once had between the (UAE). This land became Saudi Arabia’s territory in the 1990’s. This event couldn’t be found in English when researching this takeover. However, from a personal interview with a man named, “Al Hitme”, from Qatar.
“Customs were placed for trade between Qatar and the (UAE) this area was known as, “Udaid” and was forcefully obtained by Saudi Arabia 1996” –Al Hitmi stated
“I feel this was strategically done so that it would allow Saudi Arabia to trade more oil and gas with the (UAE) due to Qatar having to charge a higher rate because they had to cross the sea to trade. This led to higher oil and gas prices which was causing Qatar to lose money” –he also stated
Finally, I would like to end this with a question. If this Bridge is completed will Saudi Arabia open up the gap between Qatar and the (UAE), so that they could regulate somewhat of the trade route? I feel that Saudi Arabia could put a tax on everything going through the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia, in which connects Qatar to the (UAE). This would allow for trade, but Saudi Arabia benefiting as well.