Muscat: Oman Investment Authority (OIA) announced the restructuring of its tourism and real-estate investments in the Sultanate by transferring them to Oman Tourism Development Company (OMRAN Group), now a subsidy of OIA.
This included moving projects and shares in some companies to OMRAN, allowing the group to continue its focused role as the government executive arm in developing the tourism sector and adding further momentum to its contribution to the economic diversification drive.
The restructuring saw the transfer of the integrated “Yeti Sustainable Tourism City” project, a 1.5 million square metres waterfront tourism complex, the 5-star ‘Alila Hinu’ Bay Hotel in the Wilayat of Mirbat, Dohfar, with its 112 room, integrated leisure facilities and free-hold villas. Additionally, Naseem Hotel at Al Jabal Al Akhdhar with its chalets and adventure park has also been transferred to OMRAN’s hospitality arm.
Moreover, OIA’s shares in ASAAS Company, a joint-stock company for development and investment, were transferred to OMRAN Group in order to generate sustainable economic revenues. As part of this, the integrated multi-purpose and free-hold tourism complex “Hay Al Sharq” is also to be under OMRAN.
This step aims to channel tourist and real-estate investments under one efficient management in alignment with Oman Vision 2040 and the Tenth Five-Year Plan. Tourism has been identified in the plan as a key sector to achieve economic diversification in the Sultanate, promote growth, increase the GDP's non-oil revenues, and attract direct foreign investments. In addition, this initiative aligns well with the “Rawabet” Programme that was launched by OIA last September to establish the general framework for the governance of state-owned firms and establishing a common ground for the policies and systems of these companies in alignment with the overall strategic policies of the authority, which is also aligned with Oman Vision 2040 under the ultimate objective of economic diversification.
Hashil Obaid al Mahrouqi, Chief Executive Officer of OMRAN, expressed his appreciation to Oman Investment Authority for taking this step. Al Mahrouqi asserted that such a measure would drive the growth of OMRAN as it enters a new stage of business growth, strengthen its leading role in supporting economic diversification in the Sultanate as one of the strategic partners in Oman Vision 2040. He stressed that this step would allow the group to raise the bar to realize the national objective alongside partners in the tourism sector and other primary sectors.
“OMRAN plays a pivotal role in developing major projects, stimulating investments, and establishing a full-fledged hospitality proposition, all inspired by the unique cultural and natural heritage of the Sultanate”, added Al Mahrooqi.
The operational framework of OMRAN is based on four key pillars: tourism, development, hospitality and development partnerships. OMRAN owns, manages and invests in many tourist assets across the Sultanate amounting to 26 hotels and resorts with over 3,800 hotel rooms, ranging from luxury hotels and large-scale beach resorts to conference hotels and business hotels downtown, joint tourism as well as heritage and environmental destinations. Such assets include the Millennium Resort Mussanah, Alila Al Jabal Al Akhdhar Resort, Atana Musandam Resort, Atana Khasab Hotel, Crowne Plaza Duqm, City Hotel Duqm, Crowne Plaza Madinat Al Irfan, W Muscat Hotel, JW Marriott Muscat Hotel, Daba Beach Resort and other hospitality destinations in the Sultanate in addition to Al Hoota Cave, Nizwa Fort, Harat Al Bilad and Majlis al Jinn Cave. The development projects of OMRAN comprises Madinat Al Irfan, which is considered the largest urban development project in the Sultanate, Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre and InterContinental Muscat Hotel renovation project.
It is worth noting that since the transfer of its ownership to Oman Investment Authority, OMRAN witnessed a series of developments, including the formulation of its new board that has already made key decisions relating to some tourism development projects in the Sultanate, most notably the Waterfront project at Sultan Qaboos port, the integrated “Yeti Sustainable Tourism City” project and some other resorts and hotels. --ONA