Muscat: OQ Company, the Ministry of Education (MoE) and Jusoor Foundation signed a Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) to manage and operate Liwa Science and Innovation Centre, which is one of the community investment projects executed through Jusoor Foundation, non-profit Social Responsibility arm of Sohar Aluminium, Vale and OQ.
As per the signed MoC, the Ministry of Education, represented by the Directorate General of Education in North Al Batinah Governorate, will be responsible for the operation and management of the facilities of Liwa Science and Innovation Centre.
The MoC terms include the formation of the supervisory committee of the centre that will supervise the management and operation of the centre’s facilities. This committee, which will be chaired by the Director-General of Education in North Al Batinah Governorate, will also handle the approval of work plans and maintenance for the centre and its various facilities and will provide administrative and technical staff for the operation of the centre's facilities, including the Innovation Hall, Planetarium and Learning Resource Center.
“OQ is keen to strengthen capabilities and develop competencies in the science and innovation areas, and equipping the educational field and the local community with the latest relevant scientific developments, to align with the aspirations of Oman Vision 2040 that has been stressed upon by the Royal Speech of His Majesty Sultan Haitham Bin Tarik. As a translation of the HM’s directives to place research and innovation on the top national priorities, we are executing a number of centres for science and innovation in Liwa, as well as Al Buraimi and Al Dhahirah Governorates, within the Corporate Social Responsibility program through Jusoor Foundation,” said Dr Hilal bin Abdullah al-Hinai, Advisor to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Refineries and Petrochemicals at OQ.
“Liwa Center for Science and Innovation is one of the most important centres, in terms of implementation, readiness and space. Signing the Memorandum of Cooperation with the Ministry of Education today is the actual launch of the services of the Center to activate the activities of its facilities and objectives for the benefit of the local community, in a bid to activate the integration between the government and private sectors in supporting sustainable social development projects,” Dr Hilal Al-Hinai added.
According to Dr Ali bin Nasser Al Harrasi, Director-General of Education at North Al Batinah, Liwa Center for Science and Innovation will reflect the recommendations of the Fourth Industrial Revolution Conference, held by the North Al Batinah Governorate last year.
“It will be an educational destination and practice laboratory, through which students can hands-on-experience to apply what they learn theoretically at schools. It will also be a place to experience science and arouse passion among students and the local community to modern knowledge and technologies. In addition, the centre is expected to play a pivotal role for the support and encouragement of scientific and knowledge activities, and it will enhance the national identity through the workshops and cultural forums that the centre will be implementing, as it contains a learning resource centre and an equipped multi-purpose hall that can accommodate up to around 500 people,” Al Harrasi said.
Speaking about the centre's main objectives, Al Harrasi said that the centre aims to raise a conscious generation that achieves the future requirements, which combines both knowledge and practice.
The MoC was signed by Al Harrasi, Director General of Education at North Al Batinah, the Wali of Sohar, Sheikh Ali bin Ahmed bin Al-Shamsi, Acting Governor of North Al Batinah, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Jusoor, and Dr Hilal bin Abdullah Al Hinai, Adviser to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Refineries and Petrochemicals at OQ.