The UK’s special relationship with Oman is blooming and business is booming, according to the new British ambassador.
In his first interview since taking up the post, Hamish Cowell told the Times of Oman that UK Export Finance (UKEF), the United Kingdom’s export credit agency, is underwriting several billion pounds worth of loans to British companies to boost the United Kingdom’s (UK) long-standing commercial ties to the Sultanate, adding that UKEF’s overall current envelope for Oman is GBP 3billion pounds, with GBP 2 billion committed, which helps to encourage investment and support UK-Omani commercial activity.
The UK remains the Sultanate’s largest Foreign Direct Investor (FDI), with its strong trade links complementing one of the UK’s oldest and most treasured relationships in the region.
One of those major investments is the Khazzan gas field, operated by BP in partnership with the Oman Oil Company Exploration and Production. Phase one of the major gas project delivers around 1 billion cubic feet of gas per day, with future expansions expected to raise those figures by 500 million cubic feet of gas. Approximately, 300 wells are expected to be drilled over the estimated lifetime of the Khazzan field. The first two phases together will develop an estimated 10.5 trillion cubic feet of recoverable gas resources, the Oman Times reported.
As the Sultanate emerges onto the logistical stage, major projects such as the Duqm Special Economic Zone (SEZ) is set to benefit from the two countries’ relationship. The Duqm SEZ includes the Port of Duqm, a Refinery & Petrochemical Complex, and the New Duqm Town, among many other components. The Port of Duqm alone will complete its first phase of development in June 2018, as reported by the Times of Oman, which will include the multipurpose terminal, dry bulk terminal and early operations container terminal.