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Plans afoot for electric car manufacturing in Duqm SEZ

Charging points for electric cars in Oman.
Charging points for electric cars in Oman.

MUSCAT : More than 400 electric vehicles (EV) are currently in operation in the Sultanate of Oman with authorities weighing new procedures to facilitate direct EV imports international manufacturers, according to a top official of the Ministry of Transport, Communications and Information Technology.

Eng Khamis bin Mohammed al Shamakhi, Under-Secretary for Transport, said a number of initiatives are also being explored for the establishment of EV manufacturing facilities at Duqm SEZ.

He added in comments to ONA that EV charging points, currently numbering around 100 across the Sultanate of Oman, are projected to triple to around 300 within the next two years.

Eng Al Shamakhi noted that a list of initiatives has been approved by the relevant authorities to support the widespread adoption of electric cars in Oman.

“There is a steady increase in EV numbers, as a number of agencies have begun selling electric cars, but pricing remains a challenge, while efforts are ongoing to enable new agents to import less expensive, high-quality and safe cars,” he said

These efforts, the Under-Secretary said, align with Oman’s drive to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, stressing that the transportation sector accounts for 18 percent of the total greenhouse gas emissions in the country. Around 60 percent of these emissions come from light cars, while the rest is distributed across heavy cars, trucks, and the maritime transport sector. If the aviation sector is added, then emissions attributed to the transport sector rise to 25 percent of the total, he noted.

Stressing Oman’s commitment to Paris Climate Change Agreement, he said a delegation will also take part in the COP28 Summit due to take place in the United Arab Emirates at the end of November. It will highlight national efforts and initiatives aimed at reducing carbon levels to achieve sustainability towards Oman’s sustainable future.

Significantly, the Ministry is also working with the International Maritime Organization to update some regulations to comply with global trends, and work is underway to join the amended agreements in the maritime sector that fall under them to preserve the marine environment and reduce pollution and emissions of harmful gases.

Additionally, the Ministry is studying the potential for establishing a green transit corridor initiative for heavy vehicles and goods linking Sohar Port to the oil concession areas – a proposal that is currently in its early stages, he added.

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