Towards a Sustainable and Value- Generating Economic Transformation
Oman, with an outstanding track record in the oil and gas sector, has proven to be a trusted partner for over 50 years. Now, it is ready to apply its expertise to renewable energy sources and sustainable financial solutions.
“We are shifting from oil and gas toward a diversified, low-carbon economy, with green hydrogen becoming a major focus for the energy sector,” says H.E. Mohsin Al Hadhrami, Oman’s Undersecretary of the Ministry of Energy and Minerals, explaining how this shift to cleaner fuels will enable the country to become a net-zero economy and a global leader in green hydrogen. Pointing out that Oman’s solid track record in fossil fuels makes it “a country that is mature in terms of internation- al trade and attracting investments,” he says that the na- tion is ready to develop sustainable technologies.
In line with Oman Vision 2040, the country’s transition to sustainable energy sources goes beyond government institutions and includes both the private sector and local communities. Working with private companies, the country is ensuring the resilience of the oil and gas sector while working toward net-zero goals. For instance, Bauer Nimr LLC, Oman’s leading environ- mental turnkey solutions provider, helps oil and gas companies have a greener footprint with its ground- breaking Nimr Water Treatment Project. Recognized as the world’s largest commercially constructed wetland, it treats oily water to avoid aquifer contamination and offers tailored wastewater, sludge, and produced water treatment solutions, among other services.
Ulrich Emmer, CEO of Bauer Nimr, explains that treated water contributes to a circular economy through its reuse in salt-tolerant crops, shrimp farming, fodder cultivation, and meat and dairy production. “This creates a small economy with employment opportunities for locals in economically weak areas,” he says.
While Oman’s shift toward a sustainable economy has been focused on the energy sector—its main contributor to GDP—this transformation is backed by a strong and resilient financial sector. As the economy continues to grow—with real GDP increasing 4.3% in 2022, with a fiscal balance surplus of 7.5% of GDP—demand is growing for financing in key sectors such as infrastructure, manufacturing, mining, tourism, and renewables, and there is also an increasing need for digital banking and fintech solutions. Thus, despite the instability of some banking sectors abroad, Oman’s banking and financial sector remains sound. Omani banks have recovered from the pandemic and now display ample capital and liquidity buffers, and their asset quality remains strong, while credit to the private sector continues to expand.
Bank Muscat, Oman’s leading financial institution, continues to play a key role in this ongoing transformation by actively supporting strategic development projects and initiatives. “For more than four decades, our bank has continuously worked on improving and developing its products and services to fulfill the requirements of its customers and support the economy as it grows. With the current diversification, this is creating a self-sustaining cycle of new opportunities,” says Sheikh Waleed K. Al Hashar, CEO of Bank Muscat. Ominvest is another institution that has been central in supporting Oman Vision 2040 and attracting FDI. The diversified investment group has strategic partnerships with leading international companies, which has enabled foreign investors to access Oman’s potential as an investment hub. “Our entire business philosophy is built on the importance of constant motion, which is enveloped in diversification, and we continue to add value to Oman’s economy by always investing in high- quality, sustainable businesses,” says AbdulAziz Al Balushi, CEO of Ominvest Group.
Likewise, Oman American Business Center (Am-Cham Oman) has been key in promoting a good investment climate by maintaining the country’s historically strong trade relationship with the U.S. “Thanks to the FTA signed between the two nations, companies from all over the world are able set up in Oman and be treated as local companies, accessing the U.S. market with the perks of no import duties and free ownership,” says Ali Daud, founder andChairman of AmCham Oman.
Whether by promoting green energy, guaranteeing the resilience of the oil and gas sector, expanding the financial sector, or supporting local value-add-ing efforts, Oman’s transition to a more sustainable economy is becoming a remarkable example of both resilience and innovation.
«We are shifting from oil and gas toward becoming a diversified, low-carbon economy, with green hydrogen becoming a major focus for the energy sector.»H.E. MOHSIN AL HADHRAMI, UNDERSECRETARY OF THE MINISTRY OF ENERGY AND MINERALS
«The economic growth, innovation, and entrepreneurship fostered by
Oman Vision 2040 will create several new opportunities in the years ahead.»
SHEIKH WALEED K. AL HASHAR, CEO, BANK MUSCAT