Hydrogen Oman (Hydrom) has announced that a consortium comprising Actis, a leading investor in sustainable infrastructure, and Fortescue, an integrated green energy company, has emerged as the winning bidder in the second round of a green hydrogen tender process.

An independent entity founded by the Omani government to orchestrate and deliver the nation’s green hydrogen strategy, Hydrom said as per the deal, the consortium will develop, build, own and operate a large green hydrogen project in Oman.

The mega green hydrogen project has the potential to produce up to 200,000 tonnes of green hydrogen per year.

The project, which is currently in feasibility stage, is expected to involve construction of up to 4.5GW of wind and solar renewable energy resources that will power electrolysers.

Under the current plan, this is expected to be sold to local industrial offtakers as well as processed into derivatives (such as green ammonia) for export via the existing port of Salalah.

This provides Actis and Fortescue with exclusive rights to a high quality site, allocated to the development of a future project, it added.

The project is being implemented on a build, own and operate (BOO) model, said senior officials at the signing ceremony held recently in Muscat.

Lauding the Actis consortium for the big win, Oman's Minister of Energy and Minerals and Hydrom Chairman Engineer Salim bin Nasser Al Aufi said the sultanate is strategically located between two key green hydrogen demand centres in Europe and Asia.

"This, in addition to, our tier-1 infrastructure and logistics capabilities have enabled us to leverage our first mover advantage in the global hydrogen industry," he stated.

"The availability of renewable natural resources in Oman coupled with the country’s favorable geopolitical positioning, investor-friendly policies and progressive energy transition strategies make it one of the most suitable countries for green hydrogen production," he added.

Fortescue and Actis are both major players in the green energy space globally.

Fortescue is a global leader and innovator in the green hydrogen industry with a pipeline of projects globally, including three which have reached Final Investment Decisions, while Actis has an extensive track record developing renewable power projects with 21GW of renewable energy capacity (16GW operational, 5GW under construction or contracted) managed by the firm to date..

The duo believes a successful green hydrogen sector is a prerequisite for a successful transition away from fossil fuels and towards the decarbonisation of many hard-to-abate sectors.

Moataz Kandil, the Mena President at Fortescue, said: "Actis and Fortescue are completely in sync with our ambitions to decarbonise and create a new green energy industry globally. We share a common vision for the pivotal role that green hydrogen and green ammonia will play in forging a sustainable future."

"Oman not only has great natural resources, but it is also in an ideal location for export and has set up the structures and regulations needed to help enable this industry to flourish," stated Kandil.

"This strategic partnership between Hydrom, Actis and Fortescue will not only help to drive the development of a large-scale green hydrogen project in Oman, but will lead the way for others around the world to follow, cementing Oman as a powerhouse in green molecules," he added.

James Mittell, Director, Energy Infrastructure at Actis, said: "Green hydrogen represents an important sector in the Energy Transition – no green hydrogen, no net zero. We have been following the sector closely for a number of years; we have a well-defined strategy focused on finding opportunities with characteristics that fit the attributes of an Actis investment, including closely aligning with our sustainability agenda."

"With Governments across the world creating frameworks and standards for green hydrogen and derivatives, Oman is one of the most attractive opportunities for low-cost green ammonia due to its land availability, strong solar and wind resources, port infrastructure and regulatory support," he noted.

According to Mittell, this successful bid award represents an exciting milestone in Actis’ hydrogen journey.

"The project itself is a compelling investment opportunity to develop a major green hydrogen project, to be underwritten by strong demand for offtake, a stable and supportive regulatory environment and a prime strategic location – Oman has first rate solar and wind resources, and an ideal location from which to export green hydrogen derivatives to major demand centres in Europe and Asia," he added.

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