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  • March 04, 2020

SOHAR Port and Freezone Brings in USD 27 Billion Dollars of Investment

SOHAR conducted its annual Business Reception at The Chedi Muscat on Tuesday, March 3. During the event, SOHAR also looked back over its achievements in the past year while also shedding light on future plans that will take place in the upcoming year. The event was conducted in the presence of a large number of strategic partners and representatives of the companies working at SOHAR Port and Freezone.

SOHAR Port and Freezone witnessed considerable growth, seeing an average throughput of over 1 million tonnes of cargo per week over the course of 2019 and bringing in investments of OMR 10.4 billion (USD 27 billion) to-date. During 2019, dry bulk was valued at over 36 million tonnes, liquid bulk at over 15 million tonnes and break bulk over 1 million tonnes. Additionally, the number of vessels that were called into the port reached nearly 3,200 vessels, 900 of which were in the last quarter of the year. Aside from capacity growth, it was announced that the Phase 1 expansion of SOHAR Port South was complete and saw 50 hectares of land added to Port’s present capacity. Work is currently underway for Phase 2, which will see the addition of another 200 hectares to the Port area of 2,000 hectares. There are also plans in the pipeline for the expansion of SOHAR Freezone, which in turn, will increase its capacity to bring in prospective investors.

Mark Geilenkirchen, CEO of SOHAR Port said, “We have seen incredible growth in 2019, with SOHAR successfully attracting a majority of international industries to set up shop at the Port and Freezone. This, in turn, creates a positive impact by enhancing our contribution towards the Sultanate’s GDP, supporting the Government of Oman’s diversification objectives and simultaneously creating more job opportunities for the local community. We look forward to 2020, which will also see the completion of the SOHAR Port South expansion. The land area has already been earmarked for global giants, such as Trescorp and Total, the latter of which aims to establish an LNG bunkering supply station for vessels at the Port, therefore attracting even more investments to SOHAR.”

Commenting on the growth in the Freezone, Omar Mahmood Al Mahrizi, DCEO of SOHAR Port and Freezone - CEO of the Freezone said, “Since its establishment, SOHAR has emerged as a global logistics and industrial hub and employs a young, capable and efficient workforce, while simultaneously investing in innovative solutions and developing strategies to meet the Sultanate’s national objectives. We seek to continue our commitment to align ourselves with Oman’s diversification and logistics strategies and attract foreign direct investment to drive further growth. This is also enriched by our unique offering of being the only port and free zone in the region that managed under a single entity. Therefore, we are able to provide potential customers with an array of integrated services under one roof.”

“With several new global investments, we are continuing to look for ways to develop a myriad of downstream opportunities, wherein one industry`s waste can be used as fuel for another industry. Other innovations include tapping into sustainable and eco-friendly energy resources to attract even more investments and industries into the region. Additionally, with our lower operating costs, energy-saving systems, easy land lease options, as well as our strategic location to key global markets, we host a distinctive competitive advantage. I look forward to our continued expansion and efforts to reach out to important countries, which will entice even more new businesses, resulting in significant growth in the years to come,” Omar added.

“SOHAR Port and Freezone has a well-established mission and vision to establish itself as an important sustainable logistics hub in the region. Therefore, all our members are constantly focused on delivering excellent business services to our clients while continuing to enrich our relationship with the local community. We continue to keep ourselves abreast with the latest technology and developments to ensure maximum benefit not only to the organisation and the surrounding community but to also align ourselves with the Oman Vision 2040,” Mark concluded.

Agreements and signings over the course of 2019:

2019 saw the groundbreaking of RFX Parks, Shell and Sanvira, alongside further expansions for Al Tamman Indsil, Matrix Prime and SV Pittie. New partnerships were also forged in the Freezone with Gulf Alloys and Metals and Madhav Surfaces.

In an effort to tap into the Sultanate’s renewable energy potential, the partnership with Shell Oman foresees 600 hectares of land being utilised for Solar Photovoltaic (PV) projects. A pioneering project is expected to begin operations in the current year, with the aim of delivering a power supply capacity of 25 MW.

Gulf Alloys and Metals signed an agreement for the creation of a low carbon ferrochrome alloy production facility, capable of manufacturing of 10,000 MT per annum and is a part of the efforts of SOHAR to bring in new global investments.

The agreement with Madhav is aimed at developing a quartz manufacturing plant to produce quartz slabs and other quartz products using chrome ore and calcined lime from the local market, to be exported to the USA and Europe.

For more information on SOHAR Port and Freezone, visit soharportandfreezone.com


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  • February 22, 2020

SOHAR Kicks-Off the Kids Race at the Al Mouj Muscat Marathon

SOHAR Port and Freezone arranged for the participation of 18 families from Sohar and 876 kids from the ‘Get Sohar Active’ campaign in the Al Mouj Muscat Marathon

25 employees of SOHAR were also a part of the event

Continuing in its firm commitment to implement initiatives that embrace health and wellness, SOHAR Port and Freezone, in collaboration with Oman Sail and the Directorate General of Education in North Batinah region brought 876 children and 18 families to take part in the Kid’s Run at the Al Mouj Muscat Marathon. The event also saw the participation of 25 SOHAR employees, alongside Mark Geilenkirchen, CEO, SOHAR Port and Freezone, firing the starting pistol to commence the Kids’ Race, which took place on Saturday, February 22. These efforts are a part of the larger ‘Get Sohar Active’ programme that SOHAR is encouraging since 2019.

Commenting on the Marathon, Mark Geilenkirchen said, “At SOHAR, we seek to encourage the local community to take on a healthy and active lifestyle, in accordance with our ‘Get Sohar Active’ initiative. Furthermore, it was incredibly motivating to see thousands of young children who showed up and were excited to take part in the Kid’s Run. It was also inspirational to note that 876 of the children came from our community in Sohar. I believe that participating in activities that enhance health and wellness at an early age, will play a huge part later on in their lives and be influential in building future leaders of tomorrow.”

‘Get Sohar Active’ comprises of several activities for the whole community, including six training sessions for adults and children at the Sohar Sports Stadium throughout the year, together with nutrition and health information. The first ‘Get Sohar Active’ session was conducted last year in January 2019, facilitated by Alpha Movement Specialist. The aim of the session was to prepare everyone who were participating in the upcoming marathon. To further inspire running in the community, SOHAR will also provide designated running routes of 5km and 10km set out around the port and free zone for local runners.

“We aim to inculcate a culture of health and wellness within our community in Suhar and the Al Mouj Marathon is the perfect platform for us to showcase our support for the well-being of all citizens in Oman, alongside highlighting the importance of fitness, hard work and dedication,” Mark added.

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  • February 19, 2020

SOHAR Signs License Agreement with Albwardy Damen

In line with its commitment to provide high-quality vessel services, SOHAR entered into an agreement with Albwardy Damen on February 12. The signing took place SOHAR Port and Freezone Head Office, with Mark Geilenkirchen, CEO of SOHAR Port representing SOHAR and Mr. Ibrahim Mohamed Al Shidi, representing Albwardy Damen. The agreement will see the installation of a 40-foot workshop container at a service jetty in the Port and will be Albwardy Damen’s fourth operational location in the Middle East.

Commenting on the importance of the agreement, Mark Geilenkirchen said, “Albwardy Damen is one of the renowned shipbuilding and ship repair providers in the Middle East. Our partnership with them is truly a reflection of our efforts to provide all our clients with state-of-the-art and high-quality services. The new service will also be a valuable addition to our offerings here at SOHAR, further enriching our offerings, to ensure that we continue on our path of growth and progress in the region.”

Albwardy Damen’s portfolio, repair portfolio includes hull and deck steel repairs, hydro-blasting and painting works, GRE Piping repairs, engine overhaul, hydraulic and electric work. The upcoming workshop will be fitted out with relevant machinery and tools, including lathe, press, drilling and welding machines to offer easy and quick services for vessels calling at the Port. There will also be the presence of certified engineers, to meet requisite customer needs.

Mark Pearson, Operations Director of Al Bawardy Damen commented: “Vessels calling into SOHAR will also be able to benefit from the underwater services that are provided by Albwardy Damen Diving, which has an extensive history in serving the marine industry since 1995. The workshop container is currently being fabricated and we look forward to delivering it to SOHAR.”

For more information on SOHAR Port and Freezone, visit soharportandfreezone.com

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  • February 18, 2020

SOHAR Conducts “SOHAR Freezone Links”

SOHAR Port and Freezone conducted yesterday-Monday, February 17, 2020- its Freezone gathering, titled, “SOHAR Freezone Links”, aimed to strengthen existing relationships between investors and partners in the Freezone, as well as reviewing the latest updates and regulations that assist them in performing their businesses.

Commenting on the launch of the Freezone Links, Omar Mahmood Al Mahrizi, CEO of SOHAR Freezone – DCEO of SOHAR Port said, “At SOHAR Port and Freezone, we are always keen on ensuring that we have robust relationships with our existing tenants and to support them by any means necessary. Organising this event comes in line with our objective of identifying the challenges that face our tenants and to provide them with suitable solutions. Furthermore, our collaboration with the Directorate General of Customs will further enhance their knowledge of the updates of the customs laws so that they will be able to enrich their offerings here at SOHAR. In this way, we can ensure that we continue on our path of growth and progress, to become a prominent logistics hub in the region.”

Freezone Links, which is organised every quarter, aims to create a platform between the management of SOHAR Freezone and its tenants. It is envisioned as a common space for discussion, exchanging of information and knowledge sharing, inquiries to specialists and the provision of appropriate solutions to ensure the continuity and seamlessness of tenant services. The event also showcased a presentation highlighting new solutions and initiatives implemented by the Government of Oman.

For more information on SOHAR Port and Freezone, visit soharportandfreezone.com

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