Muscat: Oman’s master developer will hire another 1,000 people to run three new hotels and over the next five years 10,000 Omanis must be trained to meet surging tourism, real estate & hospitality demands, according to CEO James Wilson.
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The government appointed body running real estate projects & tourism development in the Sultanate wants to future-proof Oman’s economy. Today, Oman’s ministers of commerce & Industry, transport and tourism will officially launch an OMR500 million redevelopment project that will reshape the very future of the country.
The launch will be held in the presence of Minister of Commerce and Industry Dr Ali bin Masoud Al Sunaidy, who is also chairman of Omran, the leading executive government arm for tourism development in Oman.
Ahmed bin Nasser bin Hamed Al Mahrizi, Minister of Tourism, and Dr Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Salim Al Futaisi, Minister of Transport and Communications, will also be there on the auspicious day.
Oman needs to move away from oil and gas dependency, according to the government. The Mina Al Sultan Qaboos Waterfront Project is a flagship redevelopment plan that will help to achieve that, according to Wilson
As part of the government’s non-oil future strategy, Omran will help train 10,000 Omanis in just 60 months. Three global hotel chains are in talks to achieve this, he said, and 1000 staff will be hired next year to work in three hotels set to open in Oman.
The project announced today will see Muttrah Port – a trading port for centuries – re-imagined and ready to meet Oman’s new tourism future, with space for Omani artesans and small traders in an artisan hall.
James Wilson, speaking exclusively to Times of Oman, said: “Next year we will hire another 1,000 people for the three new hotels under construction in Muscat and over the next five years Oman must train 10,000 people in hotel management, real estate sales & marketing, customer services, professional tour guides and the real estate development & hotel development markets.
“This will all be done at the tourism college, which we have now been entrusted with. We are working closely with the Ministry of Manpower, Sultan Qaboos University and the Ministry of Higher Education to achieve this. We are also working closely with the Ministry of Tourism as part of the ministry’s tourism strategy.
“We were handed the reins of the tourism college and are now master-planning the whole zone to open an outlet mall, wedding hall, a “teaching” hotel run by students, professors and a core hotel staff plus we need quality student accommodation, so students from all over the country can be educated in Muscat and the parents will be comfortable knowing that Omran is looking after their kids in international standard student accommodation
“The hotel will be the first operating hotel run by teachers and students in GCC so that they can work in a real-time environment and acquire first class skills required to service tourists coming to Oman, We are negotiating with three hotel brands to flag the hotel, Starwood, Anantara and TAJ.
“The Sultanate’s centre for tourism excellence will fast become internationally renowned as one of the world’s best “teaching hotels” and a living laboratory for hospitality innovation. We are delighted to be moving forward on this to create jobs for Omanis in a future Oman not totally reliant on oil and gas.”
At today’s launch, Omran will reveal investors and sign the first construction contract for Sultan Qaboos Waterfront.
The OMR500 million ($1.29 billion) Mina Al Sultan Qaboos Waterfront project will have homes, retail units and luxury hotels besides other entertainment and lifestyle attractions over a one million square metre area. The project is aimed at transforming Mina Al Sultan Qaboos port into a major tourism-based mixed-use waterfront destination.
It will be developed in four phases and is likely to be completed by 2027.
The OMR 500 million project consists of four development phases, with the first phase expected to be completed by 2019.
As many as 12,000 direct and 7,000 indirect jobs are expected to be created..