Muscat: Classifying contracting firms in Oman will benefit the entire segment as it would help clients identify the right company for a job, according to a top official of the Oman Society of Contractors (OSC).
The proposed classification will help companies raise their standards and performance, said Shashwar Al Balushi, chief executive officer of OSC. The OSC will classify contracting firms into large, medium-size and small firms. This will make it easier to understand how to help develop them.
“It also allows clients to identify the right company for a job. As far as small and medium enterprises are concerned, it helps major contractors to identify small contracting firms for awarding sub-contracting work,” he stated.
Al Balushi said the OSC is awaiting final approval for the move from Tanfeedh.
The OSC chief also noted that identifying the right sub-contractor who can complete the project within the stipulated time is a challenge for major contracting firms. The Tender Board stipulates that a minimum of 10 per cent of the sub-contracting work in government projects should be given to small and medium enterprises.
Referring to publicprivatepartnership (PPP), Al Balushi said the scheme works in the case of some projects, but is a little difficult in the case of others.
“In the case of some projects, it is easy to introduce a PPP formula, but others might have a much more complex PPP formula. Will society accept a toll, [and] how much it can be? This is something that needs to be looked at. Basically, you are passing [on] the cost of the road to the public to pay. If society finds it difficult, it is difficult to implement. The formula has to be studied carefully to find the best solution for such projects,” explained Al Balushi.
The OSC has a membership strength of 150 members but the sector as a whole contributes OMR2 billion or 5-6 per cent to the gross domestic product and employs 750,000 workers.