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OQ signs $88 million industrial project in Suhar

Hilal Al Kharusi signing an investment agreement with one of the partners
Hilal Al Kharusi signing an investment agreement with one of the partners

Muscat: OQ Refineries and Petrochemical Industries, a subsidiary of OQ, the global integrated energy group, signed nine investment agreements with a total worth of approximately USD 88 million to establish industrial projects in the Ladayn Polymer Park in Suhar Industrial City.

These agreements are part of OQ’s efforts to support economic diversification policies and attract investment, in line with the objectives of Oman Vision 2040. Additionally, they aim to boost investment in industries that meet the needs of local markets and exports.

Hilal Al Kharusi signing an investment agreement with one of the partners
Hilal Al Kharusi signing an investment agreement with one of the partners

Aiming to maximise the added value of petrochemical projects and local businesses, the agreements focus on promoting Omani goods and services or those provided by locally registered suppliers. Such efforts are crucial for job creation and skill development, especially in the plastics industry, and they pave the way for new opportunities for small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

This agreement is a testament to OQ's dedication to boosting in-country value (ICV), a central element of the group's investment strategy aimed at enriching local markets, supporting domestic products, and strengthening small and medium enterprises (SMEs). Integral to this strategy is the localisation of select goods, contributing an estimated USD 46 million annually to the ICV. Furthermore, these collective investments are poised to create around 290 direct job opportunities, along with an additional 600 indirect jobs, underscoring the significant economic impact of OQ's initiatives.

This initiative comes in line with Oman Investment Authority’s vision in enriching In Country Value through empowering the private sector, localizing local industries, strengthening the local economy, and developing and stimulating small and medium enterprises.

Strategically located in Suhar Industrial City, the Ladayn Polymer Park is a key project aimed at propelling Oman towards self-sufficiency in plastic products and carving out a niche for the country in the international plastics market. This project is set to invigorate the local industrial sector by introducing new, added-value products, thereby fostering the growth of similar industries. The project's focus on localising specialised plastic industries and integrating cutting-edge technology is designed to enhance Oman's value proposition. Additionally, it presents incentives for investors, creating an attractive investment environment for both regional and global investors.

The agreements were signed by Hilal bin Ali Al Kharusi, Chief Executive Commercial & Downstream at OQ, alongside representatives of the following companies:

1- A USD 35 million agreement with Mohammad Riaz Sons Plastic Company for advanced sustainable plastic food packaging components, inked by the company Managing Director, Zain Mohammad Riaz.

2- An agreement to establish the Napco National project with an investment starting at about USD 15 million and increasing to USD 48 million, aimed at manufacturing packaging bags for petrochemical products, plastic compounds and packaging. The agreement was signed on behalf of the company by Issam Chaaya, Vice President for Chemicals & Petrochemicals.

3- An agreement with MAK Germany GmBH to establish a project worth USD 11 million to produce specialised plastic compounds, signed by Mohammad Amiri, Executive Director.

4- An agreement with Madayn Plastic Company SPC for USD 8 million, to produce shrink wrap tapes, packaging bags for petrochemical products, food packaging and frozen food bags. The agreement was signed by Mohammed Al Loughani, Chairman of Madayn Plastic Company SPC.

5- A USD 6 million agreement with Jil Technology for innovative 3D manufacturing, signed by Ghada Al Yousef, Founder and CEO.

6- An agreement with Jcoplastics for the establishment of a project to produce plastic waste containers, boxes and pallets, with an investment of about USD 6 million in the first phase, signed by Antonio Foresti, the company's CEO.

7- An agreement with Gemini Corporation for plastic recycling and sustainability to manufacture plastic products with an investment of USD 3 million. The agreement was signed by Surendra Patawari, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the company.

8 - An agreement with the National Plastic Lumber Company for a project to produce various products from WPC (Wood Plastic Composite), used in construction, with an investment of USD 1.5 million. The agreement was signed by Omar Al Siabi, the company's CEO.

9 - An agreement worth USD 1.5 million was signed with Al Farida Industry & Trade to produce colour masterbatch, signed by Hussein Mohammed, the company's CEO.

In a related development, The Public Establishment for Industrial Estates ‘Madayn’ also signed seven land usufruct agreements with a duration of extendable 33 years, at reduced prices with investors. These agreements were signed by Dawood bin Salim Al Hadabi, CEO of Madayn. Additionally, Omar Mahmood Al Mahrizi, CEO of Suhar Free Zone, signed an agreement with Gemini Corporation aimed at recycling plastic.

On this occasion, Hilal bin Ali Al Kharusi, Chief Executive Commercial & Downstream at OQ, stated: "These agreements reflect OQ's commitment to enhancing the Sultanate's position in the development of the manufacturing industries, supporting small and medium enterprises (SMEs), particularly those involved in the industrial sector, to establish national industries in various fields. This effort aims to achieve self-sufficiency in products and position the Sultanate as a major exporter of these products.”.

“In addition to supporting the manufacturing industries that will be established in the Ladayn Polymer Park, OQ will purchase manufactured products such as plastic pallets and packing bags for polymer granules. OQ is also committed to supporting plastic recycling plants, utilising the latest technologies that contribute to reducing negative use and environmental impact”, he added.

Dawood bin Salim Al Hadabi, CEO of Madayn, added to these insights by emphasising the project's strategic importance. "The Lidayn Polymer Park in Suhar Industrial City is a pivotal project designed to maximise in-country value by localising specialised plastic industries and leveraging advanced technology, offering enticing opportunities for investors."

Khalid bin Said Al Shuaib, Head of the National Programme for Investment and Exports Development (Nazdaher), discussed the program's role in this important project, which supports the manufacturing sector in the downstream petrochemical industry. The programme collaborates with OQ and the Public Authority for Special Economic Zones and Free Zones (OPAZ), as well as the industrial areas, to strategically target and attract investors through a comprehensive marketing plan encompassing multiple countries. This synergistic collaboration has led to the formation of a joint task force among the three entities, which has notably succeeded in drawing a number of committed investors, as demonstrated by the signing of these agreements today.

"We are delighted to collaborate with OQ in our mission to enhance the resilience of the local supply chain through innovative 3D manufacturing," said Ghada Al Yusuf, Founder and CEO of Jil Technology. “Jil Technology is dedicated to enabling Oman Vision 2040 for a robust plastic sector, and our strategic placement within Oman's plastic complex demonstrates our commitment to this goal".

Sorindra Batowarin, Chairman of Gemini Corporation, said, "We are pleased to sign an agreement with OQ that will contribute to providing raw materials for plastic-based industries in the Liwa Plastics Industries Complex. We chose the Sultanate of Oman as our gateway to this promising future. The Sultanate's commitment to sustainable transformation and business-friendly policies aligns with our goals. Our work goes beyond recycling plastic materials; it's our passion. Gemini Corporation provides international expertise and a steady supply of recycled materials to facilitate the adoption of circular economy principles for current and future companies aspiring to invest in Ladayn Polymer Park”.

Mohammed Al Loughani, the CEO of Madayn Plastic, stated that their agreement with OQ was influenced by the support and concessions offered by OQ in lowering the cost of raw materials, crucial for the industrial facility they plan to establish in the Ladayn Polymer Park. He further added, “We are extremely delighted to invest in the Ladayn Polymer Park, viewing it as a leading destination for investors in the plastic industry”.

Zain Mohammad Riyad, Managing Director of Mohammad Riaz Sons Plastic Company, commented on their projects, combining OQ's material expertise with European technology, to establish Oman's future in sustainable food packaging. He underscored their commitment to environmental responsibility and transforming plastic into sustainable solutions as part of Oman Vision 2040.

According to Antonio Foresti, CEO of Jcoplastic Middle East, "Jcoplastic SPA. Italy, a global leader in the production of plastic containers and pallets since 1963, is proud to invest in the Ladayn Polymer Park." We are pleased with the assistance provided by the OQ group in lowering raw material costs and acquiring products, which builds a solid platform for the expansion of our investments and the introduction of our latest initiatives in Oman through Jcoplastic Middle East. This factory marks the start of our industrial operations in the Middle East, creating durable goods using injection moulding technology. We strive to reach the highest quality standards and provide the most environmentally friendly products in the market”.

Omar Al Siyabi, the National Plastic Lumber Company CEO, spoke about their project focusing on manufacturing diverse products from Wood Plastic Composite (WPC), an ideal alternative to regular wood. The factory aims to partner with local companies, including OQ’s Liwa Plastic Industries Complex, and use innovative technology to produce an innovative material for use in construction, particularly finishing, furniture and doors among other applications.

“Napco National has entered into an agreement with OQ and Madayn to produce state-of-the-art plastic packaging films. The new plant is ideally located in the supply chain ecosystem of Ladayn Polymer Park and supports the promising Oman Vision 2040 to create a competitive and diversified economy”, announces Issam Chaaya, Vice President for Chemicals & Petrochemicals at Napco National. “As the largest supplier of petrochemical packaging in the world, we will put our 70-year manufacturing experience at the service of the growing petrochemical industry, train the local workforce on best production practices and contribute positively on the Oman Trade balance while driving strong returns for the shareholders'', adds Mr. Chaaya.

Mohammad Amiri, the Executive Director of MAK, stated, "With three decades of experience in the European market, MAK is strategically investing in the field of chemical industries in the Suhar Free Zone. Initially, we will establish a pioneering state-of-the-art polymer plant specialised in engineered polymers, thermoplastic elastomers (TPE), pigments and specialty compounds. This reflects our company's long-term planning and is in collaboration with OQ Group to achieve sustainability and development, leveraging German expertise in state-of-the-art equipment”.

In February of this year, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between OQ Group and the Public Establishment for Industrial Estates (Madayn), supported by the The National Programme for Investment and Exports Development (Nazdaher) and the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Investment Promotion. Following this agreement, a joint team from these organisations was formed. The team secured an arrangement with OQ to be the main supplier of required raw materials at preferential rates for the development of projects in the Suhar Industrial City (Zone 7), covering an area of one million square meters, or the Suhar Free Zone. The team is actively working to attract a group of international and local investors, employing a systematic method aimed at localising the production of plastic products in sectors such as construction, infrastructure, packaging, hygiene and healthcare products, textiles and furniture.

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