By Samuel Kutty — MUSCAT: Jan 7: A number of panel discussions and workshops will mark the two-day annual conference of Oman Society of Contractors (OSC) to be held from January 9. Under the theme “Construction sector needs an upturn”, the conference will provide a platform for stakeholders and help them reach an understanding about the several issues that the sector is facing. The panel discussions include Oman’s 2017 Budget, public private partnership, issues and opportunities in tourism, logistic and manufacturing sectors in the country.
Talal al Rahbi, Deputy Secretary General at the Supreme Council for Planning will speak on opportunities from Tanfeedh initiatives on the first day of the conference to be held at Grand Millennium Hotel Muscat on January 9 and 10, 2017.
According to Dr Hamed Hashim al Dhahab, Chairman of OSC, the future of the Sultanate’s construction industry lies in embracing advanced technology and resource planning systems, and taking the focus away from the existing manual-oriented projects.
“A more technology-driven construction sector will of course be more efficient and productive, and considerably reduce project costs. Moreover, it will encourage more Omanis to take up jobs in the construction industry,” he told Observer.
Dr Hamed, who will deliver the opening speech, said that “Introduction of high-end technology in terms of equipment and project and resource management, including automated machines, Enterprise Resource Planning solutions and Building Information Modelling, to name a few, is the way forward for the construction industry in Oman”.
Shahswar al Balushi, CEO of OSC, in his keynote address will brief the audience of what has been done and what to be expected. This will lay the ground for the various sessions ahead.
“We must diversify the economy away from dependence on oil and gas. Private sector must be given the opportunity to invest in national projects in key sectors. To achieve this, we must encourage innovation, we ought to identify and organise opportunities and we should open the possibilities for the private sector to participate in all type of economic activities with ease”, he said.