Al Mazyunah Free Zone has attracted 160 companies, which resulted in heavy investment. “This growth comes as a result of several factors and efforts made by the Public Establishment for Industrial Estates (PEIE) and related governmental bodies to streamline and facilitate the investment procedures in Al Mazunah Free Zone and to overcome the challenges facing the free zone,” said Salah Al Alawi, director general of Al Mazyunah Free Zone.
“The constant follow up and direct attention paid by the Minister of Commerce and Industry, who is also the chairman of free zones committee, has also contributed to the facilitation of the matters related to the free zone. The Royal Oman Police (ROP) has also made significant efforts in facilitating the procedures of security approvals,” he added.
The cumulative number of companies that have signed contracts in the free zone has touched 160 from different nationalities. Besides, a number of investment applications are under study, and around 30 projects are under construction.
“During the same period, the free zone has witnessed an active commercial movement. The volume of re-exported goods surpassed 64,468 tonnes by the end of 2017. In addition, the number of re-exported vehicles exceeded 11,675 by the end of 2017. In order to keep pace with this increase in the volume of goods, work is underway to establish a storage area of 10,000 square meters,” Al Alawi noted.
With regard to the infrastructure of the free zone, Al Alawi explained that creating a suitable infrastructure is the driving force of investment, which eventually plays a significant role in the attraction of investments to the free zone. “The free zone has worked to complete the development of the first package projects, which included the basic facilities of the free zone comprising gates, customs offices, warehouses, and infrastructure such as electricity, water, telecom, road networks, sewage networks, among other services. These works were completed by the end of 2014,” he said.
A tender was floated to provide the second package projects the aim at complementing the first package to provide the basic services in the free zone. The tender envelopes will be opened within the next few days and the project will be awarded to the winner.
Moreover, a tender was issued by Oman Broadband Company to connect the fiber optic network in the area, which will be completed by the beginning of the second quarter of 2018. A tender will also be floated in the coming weeks to complete the connection of electrical network in the free zone.
The free zone also introduced an online system for entering, exiting and storing good to and from the free zone on January 1. “Furthermore, an investment system will be launched next month, which will simplify the procedures and provide all necessary services to investors. The free zone will witness an electronic transformation for all its operations by the middle of this year. Besides, a number of governmental bodies are present in the free zone to offer their services to the operating companies, in addition to the presence of Sanad office to complete necessary transactions of the investors including visa related matters. The Royal Oman Police has also shown a significant cooperation by operating the customs area in the free zone.
“In addition, an agreement was signed with a company to set up a hotel in the free zone, and the company has already commenced construction work,” he informed.