Kuwait on inaugurated one of the world’s longest causeways, linking the oil-rich Gulf state’s capital to an uninhabited border region set to become a major free trade hub.
The 36km bridge connects Kuwait City to the northern desert area of Subbiya, where Kuwait aims to create the “Silk City” project linking the Gulf to central Asia and Europe.
The “Jaber” bridge, named after late ruler Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah, spans 36 kilometres (22 miles), three-quarters of it over water.
It cuts the driving time between Kuwait City and Subbiya, close to both Iraq and Iran, from 90 minutes to less than half an hour.
Investment in the Silk City project is expected to top $100 billion, and a 5,000-megawatt power plant has already been built in Subbiya.
The $3.6 billion causeway, designed by Paris-based engineering and consulting group Systra, took five years to build.