National Spatial steering panel reviews strategic spatial options

MUSCAT: The Steering Committee for the Oman National Spatial Strategy (ONSS) Project held its 3rd meeting for 2018 under the chairmanship of Dr Ali bin Masoud al Sunaidy, Minister of Commerce and Industry, Deputy Chairman of the Supreme Council for Planning (SCP).
The Committee was appraised of the latest work of the ONSS project, where the developed four strategic national spatial options were presented and discussed.
The national spatial alternatives were the result of extensive data collection and analysis, at both national and governorate levels, as well as considering international trends that will have a direct effect on future spatial development.
The work also included wide stakeholder consultation involvements through workshops at the national and regional levels.
Today’s discussions took place in preparation for presenting the four strategic spatial alternatives to the SCP during their next meeting and the Council of Ministers.
During the meeting, it was agreed to move forward to the evaluation stage for each alternative in preparation for the National Debates workshop, which is scheduled later on in the year.
Dr Hilal al Qamshoey, Project Director of the ONSS Project, explained that the four spatial national alternatives are based on the pace of growth in the country and the form of urbanisation.
He explained that the vision for the first option aims to see Oman becoming a global centre for commerce and technology, mainly led by the growth in Muscat, which would be developed as a global city.
The second option’s vision is to see Oman becoming a regional trade and commercial hub with international and regional gateways and linkages.
The vision for the third option is centred on the governorates taking a greater role in the economic diversification, led primarily through growth of the capitals and key towns within each governorate.
As for the fourth option, it envisages Oman enhancing its traditions and cultural heritages to be strengthened through improvements across the nation.
Dr Al Qamshoey also confirmed that the work carried out for the ONSS project is fully aligned with the work being done under the Oman Vision 2040 Project and the developed outline options will be presented and discussed in various meetings and workshops with the relevant stakeholders before the National Debates workshop later this year, in preparation for the selection of the preferred alternative and its endorsement by the government.
The meeting was attended by members of the Committee, Under-Secretaries and Directors General of the relevant ministries. — ONA