National strategy aims at handling 730,000 tonnes of cargo a year

SALALAH, Sept 16 – The Sultanate is making pace with global upgrade in aviation sector and trying to emerge as a major air cargo handler in the region. To achieve this aspiration, the stake holding authorities are working on development of cargo villages at all possible locations with state-of-the-art facilities and services. This was stated by Dr Ahmed bin Mohammed al Futaisi, Minister of Transport and Communications, during his stay in Salalah where he launched the newly-built air cargo terminal at Salalah Airport and reviewed other ongoing projects.
In an interview with the Observer, Dr Al Futaisi put stress on developing more airport cities and cargo villages in Muscat, Suhar, Salalah, Duqm and all other possible locations to facilitate maximum cargo movement through sea and air and reduce cargo movements through land borders.
The minister spoke about the National Cargo Strategy adopted by the Oman Aviation Group, which has an ambitious plan to handle cargo from various cargo villages in the Sultanate.
“The strategy has been approved by the board of the Oman Aviation Group. It aims at handling 730,000 tonnes of cargo per year by 2030 against our current annual handling of 210,000 tonnes.”
The focus thus would be on cargo movement through sea and air routes for which the ministry has ambitious plans to increase cargo capacity.
“We have made a roadmap for this, keeping in mind important pillars. First is to encourage private sector to import and export cargo through air and sea and reduce pressures on roads.
“Second is to enable the main growing sectors like fisheries, agriculture, light industries and pharmaceutical sectors to use these state-of-art facilities as much as possible, as aviation cargo handling would emerge as a strong enabler for them to grow.”