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Sohar facilitates 15 years of continued economic growth in Oman

Saturday, 21 September 2019 | 00:00

Over the course of 2018, Sohar Port and Freezone witnessed an increase in capacity as well as land area at the port. The reason behind the growth was the expansion of Sohar Port South, wherein 50 hectares of land was added in the first phase. Subsequent phases will see the addition of a further 200 hectares to the current capacity of 2,000 hectares.

The additional land area will significantly boost the ability of Sohar to handle greater volumes of cargo traffic and simultaneously create new and sustainable jobs opportunities.

The agreement for the development of the first phase of Sohar Port South was signed with Dredging International NV earlier this year. This development will lead to a rise in trade flows to the Sultanate of Oman, encourage shipping lines to make more direct calls to the port, opening the doors of opportunity to a larger group of potential customers in the upcoming years.

The increase in businesses plays a significant role in port development. The number of cargo volumes directly tie in with the various investments that are currently present at Sohar Port and Freezone.

The free zone hosts a multitude of companies not only from Oman but also from the GCC, the Indian subcontinent, Asia and Europe. The companies have proficiency in the industrial and logistics sectors, establishing a competitive advantage in Sohar by utilising the benefits of lower operating costs, energy-saving systems, a one-stop-shop and quick and easy land lease options.

New developments
Sohar saw several developments in the past year. The collaboration with Mannesmann saw the creation of Calcined Petroleum Coke (CPC) and Recarburizer Calcined Coke (RPC) plants. This will add value to both the aluminium and steel industries within Sohar.

Additionally, in a significant effort to tap into Oman’s renewable energy potential, Sohar entered into a land lease agreement with Shell Development Oman (SDO) in collaboration with Shell New Energies.

The agreement will see the provision of clean energy solutions through the facilitation of solar photovoltaic (PV) projects, to meet the energy demands of industrial tenants within Sohar Freezone.

The agreement with Marafi Sohar for the creation and operation of a new high-capacity mineral aggregate terminal at the port is expected to generate more market opportunities.

Sohar Navigate provides a complete overview of the most efficient routes via Sohar by deep-sea and feeder connections.

Apart from showing the optimum transport routes, the platform displays the transit time and a list of potential logistics companies and partners. Sohar Navigate offers companies in the supply chain a smarter way to use container transportation.

Oman is experiencing solid growth in the food logistics sector and e-commerce. Therefore, the rapid development of transportation infrastructure and demand for modern warehouses equipped with IT are the key drivers behind influencing the growth of the industry.

Sohar offers businesses an excellent location to set up shop and invest. As always, the motto of Sohar — It all starts here — ensures that it continually looks out for new and innovative solutions, including initiatives for further development and growth. And these are for the benefit of everyone in and around Sohar.

SOHAR Port anticipates potential business opportunities
With several developmental plans underway, including future projects, Sohar Port and Freezone continues to seek possibilities for growth and expansion. In line with this principle, Sohar is now looking forward to leasing out their Terminal 2D.

The sizable land area was initially developed in 2009 as a container terminal expansion but this has now been dedicated to businesses involved in the logistics and metal sectors. The waterfront location hosts an area of 100 hectares with easy access to cool water and the surrounding industrial clusters.

Commenting on the potential of Terminal 2D, Mark Geilenkirchen, CEO of Sohar Port and Freezone (pictured) says, “Sohar is strategically positioned at the centre of global possibilities, and has a consumer reach of more than 2.2 billion across Africa, Asia and the Middle East.

“Potential customers are generally based outside Oman, so we aim to garner as many opportunities as possible to support them in setting up operations at Sohar. Additionally, with the help of our one-stop-shop facility and the benefits we offer, investors will receive a favourable return on investment.”

Strategically located by the sea, the waterfront location of Terminal 2D is perfect for businesses looking to take advantage of the deep-water facilities and the accessibility of logistic services surrounding Sohar Port and Freezone. “With several regional ports currently running out of space, Sohar still has the capacity to further expand and attract prospective investments,” Geilenkirchen explains.

“Clustering is an innovative form of business. Therefore, the close proximity to our petrochemical, logistics and food clusters will also support the creation of upstream and downstream opportunities for further business developments.”
Source: Gulf News

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