Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 03/13/2014 -- Oman continues to develop into a regional powerhouse for the shipping and transhipment of dry bulk goods such as iron ore. To this end a new port is being constructed at Duqm and new cargo terminals at Salalah and Sohar. The new Duqm port will also boast a new oil refinery. Further port developments include the announcement that all cargo operations are to be moved from the Muscat port of Sultan Qaboos to Sohar by the end of August 2014. All of this is aided by Oman's position on the Arabian Sea, outside the Persian Gulf, enabling it to offer shorter shipping lines than ports within the congested body of water. On the macroeconomic side, growth in the Omani ports sector will be supported by an expanding GDP and rising private consumption.
Headline Industry Data
- 2014 container throughput at Salalah forecast to return to growth of 3.2%, following an estimated 2013 growth of 3.7%. Growth to 2018 will average 6.1%.
- 2014 total tonnage throughput at Sohar forecast to reach 66.36mn tonnes - an expansion of 18.9% - as operations are transferred from Sultan Qaboos. Growth will average 8.2% over the medium term.
- 2014 Oman total trade real forecast at 5.6%, and to average 2.3% per annum to 2018.
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Key Industry Trends
Gateway Role Driving Port Expansion: Oman's Port of Salalah is set to receive even more investment in an attempt to position the facility as an Eastern gateway to the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) and boost its transhipment appeal. With a US$143mn expansion of its general cargo terminal (GCT) and building of a liquid jetty already being undertaken, and both due to be completed by mid-2014, there are now plans for a major new breakwater, more liquid jetties, container berths, a cruise terminal, and tank farm - to be built over the next seven years.
Oman Fasteners Signs Sohar Tenancy Agreement: Oman Fasteners has signed a tenancy agreement with the Omani port of Sohar. Oman Fasteners is set to spend US$60mn in the first phase for constructing its plant within the Sohar free zone. As part of the agreement, Oman Fasteners plans to acquire 120,000m2 of land on lease in the zone, according to company Chairman Haytham Macki.
Railway Project To Serve As Alternative To Hormuz Strait: Abdulrahman Hatmi, director of the Oman Railway Project, has said that the first phase of construction of the Omani rail network in early 2015 will serve as an alternative to shipping goods through the Straits of Hormuz. The project will connect all the Omani ports by rail and will reinforce the company's position as a logistics hub in the Gulf Cooperation Council region.
Key Risks To Outlook
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