Building on its efforts to develop a dedicated mineral line in the Sultanate, Oman Rail — part of ASYAD Group — has announced plans to appoint an international consultant to provide advisory services on the Public Private Partnership (PPP) model that will underpin the implementation of this strategic national infrastructure scheme.
“ASYAD’s Oman Rail is exploring the development of a Public-Private Partnership (PPP) for the Mineral Line railway operation. We are now floating a tender for a PPP Advisor to assist us in this development,” ASYAD, the Sultanate’s logistics development flagship, stated in a tweet yesterday.
Tanfeedh – the National Programme for Enhancing Economic Diversification – has mooted the PPP model for the funding of the Mineral Line project. This aims to harness and commercialise the prodigious potential of mineral resources located in Dhofar Governorate. Up to 80 per cent of the capital cost in the project is anticipated to come from private investors, which includes a 30 per cent share from mining investors.
The Mineral Line project is anticipated to be a single track railway extending from Thamrait in Dhofar Governorate to the Port of Duqm via the mining hubs of Al Shuwaymiyah and Manji.
Envisioned in Phase 1 is a 377km length connecting the Port of Duqm with Al Shuwaymiyah and Manji. Another 276km section will be added in Stage 2 connecting mining areas in Thamrait with the junction of Stage 1 at Amal.
The Mineral Line project aims to support the transportation of an estimated 60 million tonnes of mineral commodities annually, from sites in Dhofar to processing plants in the Duqm Special Economic Zone (SEZ) or for export via the Port of Duqm.
It will also facilitate the transportation of an estimated one million tonnes of oilfield equipment from the port to oil and gas fields located in the hinterland of Duqm.
Furthermore, as an alternative to road-based transportation, the proposed line will ferry around 3 million tonnes of industrial goods, and some 15 million tonnes of general merchandise, including foodstuff and agricultural products, to destinations in Wusta and Dhofar governorates.
Oman Rail has set a January 7, 2018 deadline for the submission of bids for the consultancy tender.