Shell awards contracts to two Omani SMEs for Solar into Schools project

Oman Tuesday 21/February/2017 08:53 AM
By: Times News Service
Shell awards contracts to two Omani SMEs for Solar into Schools project

Muscat: As part of its 5th Gift to The Nation initiative, Shell Development Oman awarded three contracts to two Omani small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to carry out the installations into schools in the pilot phase of ‘Solar into Schools’ project.

The pilot school sites are located in Al Buraimi, Nizwa and Salalah, with a fourth pilot school site located in Muscat to be announced in due course.

‘Solar into Schools’ project was identified as one of the two initiatives announced under Shell’s 5th Gift to The Nation in 2015. In collaboration with Ministry of Education, Shell is contracting with Omani solar SMEs to install solar photovoltaic (PV) panels into 22 public schools across the Sultanate over the next few years.

Fajwa for Solar Energy Solutions Systems LLC will install solar panels into the Um Al Fathel girls public school in Nizwa, while Hussam Technology Company LLC is going to install into Sultan Qaboos School, a boys public school in Al Buraimi and Khawala bint Hakim School, a girls public school in Salalah. Procurement activities by the two Omani solar SMEs have already commenced, with the first three pilot sites anticipated to be operational in early to mid-2017.

Last year, a group of aspiring Omani entrepreneurs interested in developing their solar business attended a training course on the fundamentals of solar photovoltaic (PV) technology that was hosted by Shell Development Oman and delivered by an internationally recognised solar expert, Dr Sean White. The intensive 5-day training provided participants with the basic fundamentals they need to design install, and operate photovoltaic systems safely. The training helped equip Omani solar SMEs with the knowledge and skills they need for the next phase of Shell’s Solar into Schools project or other solar projects the SMEs are pursuing.

Speaking about the contract awarding process, Chris Breeze, Shell Country Chairman in Oman stated: “We at Shell are very pleased to support Oman’s budding solar ecosystem through the ‘Solar into Schools’ initiative. Upon completion of the solar PV training course, the project tender was released for the Omani SMEs in the market to compete. A total of seven SMEs participated with their bids, out of which two have been identified and selected for contract award for the pilot stage of the project. Shell is committed to enterprise development in Oman and to help the country meet its growing energy needs in a responsible and sustainable way.”

Gift to the Nation is a tradition initiated by Shell in 1995 – the 25th anniversary of Oman’s Renaissance – to launch a new project that carries a small further contribution to the development of Oman’s society and economy every five years.

These projects are selected very carefully, with the involvement of experts from Shell and other external professionals with good knowledge of Oman and experience in dealing with matters of social investment. The individual projects are structured in a way that allows Shell to see through the process of their implementation, and steer them towards realisation of the objectives developed for them