SALALAH, Sept 2 – The state-of-the-art headquarters of the Salalah Free Zone (SFZ) was opened on Monday under the auspices of His Highness Sayyid Asaad bin Tareq al Said, Deputy Prime Minister for International Relations and Cooperation Affairs and Personal Representative of His Majesty the Sultan. Ahmed bin Nasser al Mehrzi, Minister of Tourism and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Salalah Free Zone, and a large number of dignitaries attended the gala celebration marking the opening of the main building of the SFZ.
The SFZ headquarters is equipped with latest technology and built with the highest international standards keeping in mind integrated services to investors and companies operating in the free zone. In his opening speech, Ali bin Mohammed Tabuk, Chief Executive Officer of Salalah Free Zone, said the opening of the main building marked a new phase of success and progress of the SFZ, which has so far attracted investments worth $7.8 billion and generated more than 7,000 jobs for citizens. “We have been able to raise the Sultanate’s competitiveness in the international markets through the successful foreign direct investments at Salalah Free Zone.
Apart from existing investments, new investments worth $1 billion of foreign direct investment is under negotiation, as the SFZ aspires to provide 21,000 jobs and attract investment of $15 billion over the next three years,” he said. The SFZ headquarters is spread over 22,500 square metres and the main building consists of seven floors including administrative offices of Salalah Free Zone and offices for rent in addition to other services and facilities. Al Mehrzi, Chairman of the Board of Directors of SFZ, expressed happiness over the inauguration of the SFZ and said: “The Salalah Free Zone will be a good addition among the other free zones located in other parts of the Sultanate. It has all the key elements to compete globally.”
The Salalah Free Zone has been successful in bringing investment and creating business opportunities for national companies. It is instrumental in generating jobs for citizens, exploiting national facilities such as ports and airports, transferring knowledge and technology and developing the financial sector. The free zone has advantage of location and infrastructure that makes it highly competitive due to its proximity to the Port of Salalah and Salalah Airport. Its unique advantage is the trade line and the main shipping line that links it with east and west. “Its cost effectiveness makes SFZ ideal stop for investors as they are able to reduce distance and time and reduce the cost to reach the markets of the Middle East and the markets of the Indian subcontinent and East Africa,” said an official of the Salalah Free Zone.