OIA to manage Million Date Palm Plantation Project
To enhance financial sustainability, and in line with Oman Vision 2040, the Oman Investment Authority (OIA) announced the commencement of the preliminary steps to take over the management of the Million Date Palm Plantation Project on Tuesday.
The Million Date Palm Plantation Project is the biggest project undertaken in the sultanate to enhance the role of date palms in the agriculture sector.
A statement issued by OIA, said, ‘The project aims to enhance food security in the sultanate, create opportunities in the private sector, enhance the role of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) while enabling farmers to play a major role in this. The authority will produce high quality date palm seedlings and distribute these among farmers and purchase their produce. It will also cultivate fields to produce high quality crops.’
H E Abdulsalam bin Mohammed bin Abdullah al Murshidi, chairman of OIA, said, “The authority realises the responsibility entrusted to it to assume the management of this project through the Oman Food Investment Holding Company - the executive arm of food security in Oman - which has sufficient experience, integrated systems and qualified cadres to manage assets and facilities.”
According to H E Dr Saud bin Hamoud al Habsi, Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Water Resources, the decision to assign OIA to manage the project will result in a qualitative leap in the agriculture sector in the sultanate as it is intended to integrate the ministry’s operations as a regulator of the sector with Oman Food Investment, the private sector and farmers.
Elaborating on Oman Food Investment’s role in this collaboration, its chairman Eng Tariq bin Ali al Amri informed that it will assess the existing farms selected for the project in an effort to convert these into independent profit-generating centres that are run at top efficiency and engage the private sector in the process.