MUSCAT: The Ministry of Commerce, Industry, and Investment Promotion (MoCIIP) in Oman is spearheading efforts to revolutionise the industrial landscape through the adoption of artificial intelligence (AI) and factory automation technologies.

With a focus on enhancing productivity, competitiveness, and sustainability, this initiative marks a pivotal moment in Oman’s journey towards economic diversification and technological advancement.

Under the banner of ‘Factory Automation and Artificial Intelligence’, the MoCIIP is committed to empowering private sector entities with cutting-edge technologies to drive efficiency and innovation in manufacturing processes.

Mazin Al Siyabi, Director of Technical Assistance at Oman’s Ministry of Commerce, Industry, and Investment Promotion, underscored the pivotal role of AI and automation in Oman’s industrial landscape.

“AI and factory automation are essential for Oman’s industrial growth,” said Al Siyabi, emphasising their potential to enhance efficiency and competitiveness.

Al Siyabi said initiatives like ‘Factory Automation and Artificial Intelligence’, are aimed to propel Omani industries forward.

“Empowering our workforce with automation skills is crucial,” he noted, stressing collaboration with academia and the private sector.

Recognising the pivotal role of these advancements in the Fourth Industrial Revolution, the ministry aims to position Oman as a leading investment destination, aligning with the objectives of Oman Vision 2040.

The initiative encompasses two pathways: one targeting new factories built to the highest standards of efficiency, and the other aimed at existing facilities, encouraging their transition towards operational excellence through the integration of advanced technologies.

Key stakeholders in the industrial sector have lauded these efforts, acknowledging the positive impact of supportive policies and strategic interventions in driving sectoral growth.

Notably, initiatives such as the Value-Added Localisation Programme and the launch of the ‘Made in Oman’ platform underscore Oman’s commitment to fostering a conducive environment for industrial development and promoting locally manufactured products.

Professor Ghassan Al Kindi, Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation at Sohar University, emphasised the significance of AI and automation in enhancing productivity, quality, and competitiveness. He stressed the importance of collaborative efforts between academia, vocational training institutes, and businesses to equip Omani professionals with the skills needed to thrive in the era of automation.

Ahmed Al Barwani, Chairman of the Sectorial Skills Unit for the Industrial Sector, hosted by the Omani Industrialists Association, highlighted the unit’s role in enhancing workforce skills and fostering a competitive industrial landscape. Through skills accreditation programmes and collaboration with various stakeholders, the unit aims to meet the evolving demands of the industrial sector and contribute to economic growth.

Industry leaders like Hilal Al Hosni, CEO of Cimat Global and Abdul Hakeem Al Qasmi, Acting Managing Director of Sohar Sulphur Fertilizers, stressed the transformative potential of AI and automation in optimising production processes, reducing waste, and enhancing profitability.

As Oman celebrates its Industrial Day, the concerted efforts of government and industry stakeholders underscore the nation’s commitment to driving sustainable industrial growth through technological innovation and strategic partnerships.

With a clear vision and collaborative approach, Oman is poised to emerge as a hub of innovation and industrial excellence in the region.

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