Khazaen Economic City, located at Barka in South Al Batinah Governorate, has so far garnered investments totalling RO 120 million as of June 30, 2022 – underscoring the growing investment appeal of the nation’s first integrated economic hub.
Round half of this total investment has come from overseas in the form of foreign capital, according to officials. Additionally, Khazaen has successfully signed with 15 SMEs, with a total investment amounting to RO 10 million.
Of a total of 85 projects that have been signed for development within the City, 37 ventures, worth RO 50 million, are promoted by local investors.
In an exclusive interview to the Observer, Khazaen officials revealed that two strategic initiatives are currently making headway in their implementation at the Economic City.
Notable is the Labour Village, which will be established in the middle of every industrial and logistical block in the City. Works have been initiated for the first phase of the Labour Village, which will be developed over 25,000 square metres and will be able to accommodate approximately 5,000 workers. Besides offering workers' housing, the complex will also be equipped for catering, cleaning, primary health care, and banking services.
Furthermore, the Labour Village includes an integrated services complex with an area of 30,000 square metres, with facilities such as a commercial complex, a mosque, sports fields, a garden, banking services, and public services.
The second landmark development is Khazaen Central Fruits and Vegetables Market, which is one of the main components of the future Food City.
“It will contribute to supporting the Omani strategy to achieve food security. The new market will also provide integrated logistical solutions for cold and dry storage of various vegetables and fruit products, and modern advanced facilities that serve the associated logistical activities, including storage, packaging, handling, and transportation. It will improve cold chains and supply and greatly help in attracting local and international investors in the vegetable, fruit, and food sector, and also serve as an international centre for the export and import of other foodstuff,” an official stated.
Commenting on the incentives offered by the Economic City, the official pointed out that the benefits include, among other things, the City’s advanced infrastructure, ease of procedures, incentives, and facilities that attract all categories of investors.
Another key factor is the city's strategic location, which is linked to a solid multi-model transportation logistical infrastructure that ensures quick access to major ports and trading routes in Oman and the international markets.
Adding to the City’s investment appeal is the presence of Khazaen Dry Port, which offers its clients the ability to import and export directly within Khazaen’s premises, while also enhancing the logistics and connectivity to local and international markets.
Key investors that are already in operation at Khazaen are: Wakud, Oman’s first specialised biofuel production plant; and Galfar Engineering’s pre-built warehouses and main centre. Meanwhile, several projects are under construction this year, such as Opal BioPharma and Business, Al Zayzafon Investments, Al Watania Al Khalijiyah for Paper Products LLC, Khazaen Main Office, Al Sumsuman, Pre-Built Warehouses, Gulf Warehousing Company, and Naqel Express.
Khazaen's vision is to develop and operate an integrated economic city on a global level targeting investments in various sectors, said the official. These sectors encompass logistics, industrial, technology, medical, food, commercial, and real estate.
“Khazaen Economic City aims to enable investment by capitalising on the unique nature of its major projects such as the Logistics and Industrial Centers, Khazaen Dry Port, Truck Rest Area, Khazaen Central Fruits, and Vegetables Market, Pre-built Warehouses, Auto Mall, Labour Village that would support the business environment in the city, the official added.