OMR19 million financing pact signed for major mining project in Oman

Business Sunday 16/January/2022 15:29 PM
By: Times News Service
OMR19 million financing pact signed for major mining project in Oman

Muscat: As part of its continued efforts to further support major industries in the Sultanate, Sohar International recently signed an agreement with Al Hadeetha Resources to extend OMR19 million worth of financing to the Wash-hi Majazah mining project that seeks to provide impetus to the Sultanate’s mining industry, and thereby contribute to the economic diversification objectives in line with Oman Vision 2040.

Signing the agreement on part of the bank was Ahmed Al Musalmi, Chief Executive Officer of Sohar International, whereas Sayyed Khalid bin Hamed bin Saif Al-Busaidy, Chairman of Al Naba Holding, Devaki Gulabsi Khimji, Managing Director of Al Tasnim Group and Atmavireshvar Sthapak, Managing Director of Alara Resources Ltd represented the company.

Commenting on the signing ceremony, Ahmed Al Musalmi, said, “Mining is one of the government’s key focus sectors as per the economic diversification plan, and Oman’s mining industry has attracted both, foreign and local operators. As a bank that has been strongly aligned with Oman Vision 2040, it gives us immense pleasure to support and finance such projects that contribute towards the overall long-term vision of the nation. Regarded as one of the major mining projects in the Sultanate, the scale of its operations will contribute significantly to the overall economy, creating in-country value, job opportunities and much more.  At Sohar International, we remain invested in supporting ventures that provide sustainable socio-economic benefits to the community enabling people to prosper and grow.”   

Al Hadeetha Resources, a joint venture between Alara Resources, Al Hadeetha and Al Tasnim, is the first international joint venture company that has been awarded a copper mining license in Oman for the Wash-hi Majazah project. Located in the Governorate of North Al-Sharqiyah, the Wash-hi Majazah copper deposit has been evaluated under JORC standards for over 16 million tonnes of copper resources and 10 million tonnes of mineable reserves.

With an increase in global demand for copper, the Wash-hi Majazah project provides various channels of growth and prosperity in the economy as well as socio-economical benefits to the Sultanate and local communities such as providing employment for approximately 200 Omanis, local skill developments, opportunities for local suppliers and vendors, infrastructure development and much more. We would like to mention that the factory will be inaugurated in November of this year, coinciding with the country's celebrations of the glorious National Day.

“A project of this scale requires the right kind of support, and we are grateful to Sohar International for extending their project financing services to ensure that our operations are carried out without any hindrance,” said Sayyed Khalid bin Hamed bin Saif Al-Busaidy, Chairman of Al Naba Holding. “Supported by the government represented by the Ministry of Energy and Minerals implementing favourable reforms to support the mining industry in Oman, we are certain that developments in this sector will be promising. While the economic benefits from the mining sector will be far-reaching, such mega projects complement the government’s agenda to establish a decentralised local administration resulting in the various regions of Oman prospering and growing. It is also important to note that Wash-hi Majazah project will contribute immensely to the generation of job opportunities and increasing employment for the local workforce. Apart from individual job seekers, the project will provide ongoing business prospects to local SMEs and vendors.”

With an equity contribution of OMR8 million bringing up the total valuation of the project at approximately OMR27 million, Wash-hi Majazah project will generate cash flows of OMR200 million for 10 years. The project will empower the local community in the Governorate of North Al-Sharqiyah and create significant in-country value that will have an impact on the neighbouring governorates and regions harnessing local capabilities and creating a strong value chain impacting everything from skills to infrastructure development such as upgradation of local STP plants, power, road and water. This project will also contribute in general to support the financial sector and the country's cash flow.

“We are always looking at the opportunities that will boost in-country value and we are proud to invest in local cooper miming projects in Oman with our esteemed partners. We appreciate Sohar International for their trust in this project," says Devaki Khimji.

At the forefront of encouraging Omani businesses to invest in flourishing sectors, Sohar International has extended financial support to various organisations that have demonstrated due credibility, competence and dedication in contributing to the nation’s progress. The bank’s dedicated team of highly-qualified professionals ensures seamless project execution which is not just limited to the provision of funds, but also insightful financial advisory based on in-depth market knowledge and analysis.

AV Sthapak, Managing Director of Alara Resources said, “Alara wishes to thank Sohar International, our fellow JV partners for their valuable support and for their disciplined approach towards realising our mission of becoming a mid-tier mineral producer with a focus on mineral deposits and projects in Oman. These are exciting times for the global copper mining industry and Al wash-hi Majazah Project is destined to write a new chapter for Oman copper.”

With financing such a project, Sohar International reflects upon its commitment towards the development of the nation’s economy by constantly seeking collaborations with organisations both on a local and global level offering the most innovative and comprehensive solutions in all market conditions.