MUSCAT: The development and operation of a National Ports Community System in Oman – an initiative to strengthen the Sultanate’s credentials as a logistics-enabled economy – will now be pursued as a Public Private Partnership (PPP) based project.

Overseeing the delivery of the project is the recently established Public Authority for Privatisation and Partnership (PAPP) which, earlier this week, invited suitably qualified consultants to participate in a competitive tender to provide Transaction Advisory Services underpinning the roll-out of a National Ports Community System for the Sultanate.

Interested consultants have until May 7, 2020 to collect a Request for Qualifications (RfQ) from the Authority to register their interest in participating in the tender.

The proposed Ports Community System (PCS), according to the Authority, will serve as a “Neutral and open electronic platform enabling intelligent and secure exchange of information between public and private stakeholders in order to improve the competitive position of the port and air ports’ communities”.

Plans for a National Port Community System were first mooted by Tanfeedh (The National Programme for Enhancing Economic Diversification) in 2017 as part of over 100 ‘quick-win’ initiatives designed to spur non-oil economic investment in the Sultanate. A PCS has long been mooted as imperative to integrating the currently disparate systems currently operated by various the stakeholders who together make up the shipping, port, maritime and logistics community of the Sultanate.

It seeks to facilitate the exchange of information between multiple systems run by a variety of local and international government and private entities, as well as support the integration and harmonization of the ports with other systems, such as the Bayan system of ROP Customs and One-Stop platforms.

Based on the ‘single window’ concept, the Port Community System (PCS) will optimize, manage and automate port and logistics processes via the establishment of a standardized platform that connects all transport and logistics chains.

Public sector stakeholders in the initiative include Asyad Group – the Omani government’s transport and logistics flagship, as well as the three principal seaports at Salalah, Suhar and Duqm, Oman Aviation Group, the Directorate General of Customs (Royal Oman Police), and Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries.

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