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Carpooling Goes From Crime to Decree in Dubai

<p>Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority used to slap motorists with heavy fines for ridesharing. Faced with exploding population growth and 8 million tourists a year, officials have changed their tune.</p>
May 22, 2008, 11am PDT | Tim Halbur
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"In Dubai yesterday, a senior RTA official announced that people working at the same organisation and wishing to share lifts would be able to register for a carpooling licence online within one month. After applicants have entered their personal details and information about the vehicles, the authority will conduct background checks on colleagues intending to carpool before issuing a letter of approval, which could be presented to inspectors as proof of authorisation. Registration will be compulsory."

"The city's population is expected to grow threefold to more than three million by 2030, while tourist numbers may quadruple to eight million a year. As the number of visitors increases, improvements to the transport system are seen as critical to efforts to make Abu Dhabi sustainable, tackle congestion and end widespread reliance on taxis and private cars."

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Published on Monday, May 19, 2008 in The National, Abu Dhabi
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