Oman Aluminium Rolling Company (OARC) has opened a $385m plant in Sohar, north of the capital Muscat, which will be operational by the end of Q1 2014.
The annual capacity of the plant is 140,000 tons of multi-purpose aluminium sheets which will be sold regionally and exported to the Middle East, Asia, Europe, Australia, North and South America.
The factory is located next to Sohar Aluminium Smelter, where smelted aluminium is transferred to the rolling processing with various alloys, depending on the market needs.
Hilal Al Kharusi, chairman, OARC, said the site will create jobs for Omanis, diversify the national economy and export processed aluminium overseas.
“Emphasis should be given on diversifying the national economy and providing job opportunities for Omanis, this huge project will be a milestone in the Omani industrial sector and bring in numerous benefits to the national economy,” he said.
“We are looking at reaching full plant operational capacity in the first quarter of 2014.
“We started contributing to local businesses through providing job opportunities and contracting with local vendors and small businesses and we plan to export processed aluminium to different countries overseas.”
The factory produces aluminium sheets from 75 micron to 8 mm thickness and up to 1900 mm wide.
The alloys of 1xxx, 3xxx, 5xxx and 8xxx series are used in a variety of manufacturing industries for food containers, ceilings panels, building and construction materials and heat exchangers.
Buddy Stemple, CEO, OARC said the plant is expected to grow rapidly in the coming years and it has signed a long-term contract with Sohar Aluminium Company to receive smelted aluminium directly from its plant.
Owned by Takamul Investment Company with a total cost of 148 million OMR ($385m), the OARC facility is one of the largest projects in Sohar.
The current Omanisation percentage at OARC is 70%, where 89% of the national workforce is from North Al-Batinah and nearby areas, with 100% Omanisation on the plant operations level.