Sultanate celebrates industry day, discusses challenges facing the sector

February 10, 2019

The Ministry of Commerce and Industry celebrated Omani Industry Day on Sunday. The day which falls on February 9 every year is celebrated to mark the first visit of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said to Rusayl Industrial Estate in 1991.

Dr Ali bin Masoud bin Ali al Sunaidy, Minister of Commerce and Industry, met industrialists and persons interested in the industrial sector at the Sheraton Oman Hotel. The delegates discussed the challenges facing the industrial sector and the requirements for the next stage to increase the contribution of industrial sector to GDP.

Dr Sunaidy said, “The meeting is an opportunity to review the most important indicators of the performance of the industrial sector and discuss the most important trends of the sector during the next stage, in addition to listening to your views and proposals to serve this vital sector.”

He added, “The industrial sector is one of the five productive sectors that this programme focuses on in the early stages of its implementation. The number of projects in the industrial sector within Tanfeedh reached 26 of which some have reached the production stage.” Implementation rates in the total projects reached 40 per cent to 90 per cent according to the nature of each project.

The rate of what was completed in general by the end of 2018 for those projects reached 69 per cent. The projects of Tanfeedh which are being implemented include the Industrial Research Centre in partnership with Sohar University, out of the belief of the government in the importance of research and development in the industrial field.

The centre includes several units for the design and production of industrial models. The completion rate in the factory reached about 50 per cent by the end of 2018. “It is expected that the remaining parts will be completed at the end of this year and be operational at the beginning of 2020.”

He pointed out that the Fourth Industrial Revolution has already begun and one of its most prominent applications will be artificial intelligence, the internet of things and large data, e-commerce, cloud computing, robots and renewable energy.

He added that the sultanate has recently signed an agreement with the World Economic Forum to help factories and service institutions to prepare for future jobs.

Hilal bin Hamad al Hasani, CEO of the Public Establishment for Industrial Estates (Madayn) stressed that industrial cities for the tenth year in a row have achieved growth in all indicators and business results despite the regional and global financial and economic crises.

He added, Madayn has not seen any decline in recent years and the most recent one, 2018, witnessed an unprecedented turnout, as it received more than 450 new investment applications.