Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre nearly ready to open

Oman Monday 09/May/2016 15:20 PM
By: Times News Service
Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre nearly ready to open

Muscat: An exhibition centre, a 22,396 square metre (sqm) exhibition hall, 10 hospitality suites, Hall One, and a 12,000 sqm outdoor exhibition space will be opened during Phase 1 of Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre (OCEC) on August 15 this year, a top official said.
“The centrepiece of the Phase 1 is the exhibition hall that can be divided into five separate halls,” Trevor McCartney, general manager of the OCEC, told the Times of Oman.
“Supported by a dedicated full production kitchen, Hall One can be used for a range of prestigious events, including conferences, exhibitions, banquets, graduations and weddings,” McCartney added.
In the 10 hospitality suites, which will be located on the third level of the exhibition centre, 196 delegates can be seated in theatre style or lower numbers for smaller board meetings or corporate gatherings.
Owned and developed by Omran, the government arm for tourism development in Oman, when completed, OCEC is expected to be the centrepiece of Oman’s business development programme for establishing the Sultanate as a major regional venue for regional and international events.
According to McCartney, the convention centre is scheduled to open doors to Phase 2 in December 2017.
“In Phase 2, the OCEC’s inspirational 3,200-seat lyric-style theatre will be opened. Set over three levels, it has advanced projection, a sound system and rigging capabilities. An adaptable venue, the theatre can scale down to accommodate 1,000 guests, using the lower tier,” the he added.
McCartney said the OCEC will also have an elegant 450-seat auditorium and a range of additional meeting rooms.
“Phase 2 will see the inauguration of the Grand and Junior Ballrooms, with the first equipped to accommodate 2,688 delegates in theatre style, 1,680 people in classroom style or a lavish banquet setting for 1,200 guests,” he stated.
Oman built the region’s first exhibition centre—the Oman Oil and Gas Exhibition Centre— in Muscat in 1979. It hosts on average of about 30 trade and consumer exhibitions annually.
In March 2013, Omran released a study on the OCEC project conducted by Booz & Co., which projected that the project will generate OMR295 million in local spending and estimated that OCEC will create up to 15,000 to 18,000 direct and indirect jobs and contribute OMR200 to 240 million to the national economy by 2030.
The study also pointed out that by 2030, the OCEC will contribute OMR140 to 170 million to gross domestic product (GDP), with 30 per cent of this amount generated from tourism revenue.
The OCEC is also part of the Madinat Irfan Urban Centre.