DUQM: The two-day Duqm Investment Forum concluded at the Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in Duqm on Tuesday, October 17, 2023, under the auspices of Eng Ahmed bin Hassan al Dheeb, Vice President of the Public Authority for Special Economic Zones and Free Zones (OPAZ) in Oman.
Speaking on the occasion, Al Dheeb highlighted the forum’s success in unlocking the “many possibilities and opportunities” of SEZAD that were laid bare over the two-day event.
“This Duqm Economic Forum has clearly demonstrated how Duqm is leading change in green industry,” said Al Dheeb. “It has provided a window on the rich possibilities of the Special Economic Zone at Duqm, its exceptional appeal as an investment destination, and its outstanding competitive offer. A competitive offer defined by a steadfast commitment to sustainable growth, a keen pro-business outlook, and a bold innovative spirit.” The first session, he said, shed light on how Duqm’s green hydrogen presents heavy industry with a viable solution to decarbonize and propel their manufacturing towards a more sustainable industrial future through discussions that covered renewables supply, sustainability goals, the demand for green materials, and more, the official said.
“The second panel explored exactly why Oman is considered a future renewable superpower and the role Duqm is already playing in positioning Oman as a world-scale producer and exporter of zero-carbon fuels to international markets, creating a green energy advantage for our nation.” The value proposition offered by Duqm, Al Dheeb noted, is stronger than ever before, as under the wise leadership and guidance of His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik, Oman is committed to bringing to life the goals and ambitions of Oman Vision 2040.
“The many opportunities of Oman’s vibrant economy are fully expressed here at the Special Economic Zone at Duqm – an investment destination of immense potential, an exciting hub for commerce, industry and innovation, and a gateway for global trade,” he stated.
Deliberations on the first day also focused on the immense renewable energy potential of Duqm, which will support the development of a large-scale green steel industrial cluster, creating a wealth of downstream opportunities in the automotive industry, the manufacturing of solar panels, wind turbines, and more.
Other sessions shone a spotlight on the vast potential of Duqm as a multi-purpose economic, commercial and industrial epicentre, as a major hub for global trade flows and the distribution of new energy. They also highlighted the new roles in the green energy transition for the petrochemicals industry – just one being the manufacture of many of the parts required for today’s modern renewable energy system.
The rich opportunities offered by Duqm are exemplified by the Duqm Refinery project and the Raz Markaz Crude Oil Storage Terminal - the largest oil storage in the Middle East. On the horizon is a new petrochemicals industry that will move forward with its new business models, he said.
His Highness Sayyid Dr Adham bin Turki al Said, Assistant Professor of Economics at the College of Economics and Political Science, Sultan Qaboos University, said the forum reflects the extent of economic development in Duqm, and is considered a gathering of experts, investors, CEOs, and companies investing and investing in the Duqm region.
“We work to provide realistic solutions to existing challenges and enhance cooperation and investment in renewable energy projects, steel iron, green hydrogen, and associated projects, and the petrochemical industry. The Duqm region is considered a point of major focus, and it was noted that there is great economic potential that Duqm can offer to institutions and Oman in general,” he said.
HH Sayyid Adham praised the importance of expanding such forums held in the Duqm region, as they contribute to increasing tourism and commercial activity and enhance follow-up of economic developments in the region.
Eng Khamis al Shamakhi, Transport Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Transport, Communications and Information Technology, underscored Duqm’s importance as a logistics hub.
“We are talking about having a strong supply chain and positioning Duqm to be a logistics hub. Therefore, the logistics sector will become the second biggest in terms of GDP contribution. To this end, we are working to make Duqm a gateway to all neighboring countries, as we have worked to sign a number of agreements with companies to make Duqm a distributor for other countries.”
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