• June 30, 2014

SOHAR prioritises poverty reduction during month of Ramadan

  • $40,000 Ramadan aid programme shows company’s compassionate side

  • H.E Sheikh Said bin Humaid al-Harthy launches month-long aid campaign

  • Thousands of individuals from poor households to benefit from programme

SOHAR Port and Freezone has made poverty reduction its top priority during Ramadan, following the launch of a month-long US$40,000 aid programme that will offer support to hundreds of poor households.

The programme was launched by H.E Sheikh Said bin Humaid al-Harthy, and will see hundreds of vouchers distributed among local families as part of the company’s commitment to serving the local community.

Families were selected based on income, with recommendations provided by the Liwa Wali’s Office and the North Al Batinah Directorate. And with an average of 7 people per household, the campaign is expected to relieve the pressures faced by over 2,600 individuals – allowing them to focus on Ramadan.

The first of the vouchers were presented by H.E. Sheikh Said bin Humaid al-Harthy, Wali of Liwa, in the presence of SOHAR CEO duo Andre Toet and Jamal Aziz, who each shared their thoughts on the campaign.

“Helping those in need is one of the core principles of Islam and is closely aligned with the values that have shaped our approach towards creating a sustainable and responsible business at SOHAR,” said Mr. Aziz.

“By providing aid vouchers to local families we aim to reduce the financial pressures faced by families living close to the poverty line, and allow them to focus more fully on their spiritual pursuits,” he added.

These sentiments were echoed by SOHAR CEO, Andre Toet, who spoke of his own personal observations of Ramadan, after having made Oman his family home for the last two years.

“Ramadan has always come across as an incredibly uplifting time and I am delighted we can offer poor families some support during this period,” said Mr. Toet.

“US$40,000 is a significant commitment, and demonstrates how much we believe not only in creating jobs, but in finding other ways to support the community,” he remarked.

Oman was regarded as the ‘most-improved country in the last 40 years’ back in 2010 – ahead of China, Nepal, Indonesia, and neighbouring Saudi Arabia – and as an integral part of the government’s plans to diversify the economy, SOHAR has brought 1,000 per cent growth to the Al Batinah region in just five years.

As such, the SOHAR management team recommitted themselves to creating jobs at the launch ceremony, with over 30,000 direct and indirect employment opportunities created so far, and over 400 more on the horizon at two of the port’s chief terminal operators: C. Steinweg and the Oman International Container Terminal.