Transport Ministry Unveils National Aviation Strategy 2030

Muscat, The Ministry of Transport today unveiled the National Aviation Strategy 2030, aimed at strengthening Oman’s economy through improving the aviation industry in the Sultanate, which will significantly and directly contribute to the gross domestic product.

The strategy received the attention during the reign of the late Sultan Qaboos Bin Said Bin Taimour. There is also a great attention accorded to the strategy by His Majesty Sultan Haitham Bin Tarik.

The launch, which was held in the presence of Dr. Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Futaisi, Minister of Transport, and several dignities and officials of the public and private sector in the country, revealed the pillars of the National Aviation Strategy that is set to achieve the ambitious goals by 2030. This includes developing an effective organizational framework that contributes to supporting and developing the aviation sector, strengthening the Omani economy, creating job opportunities, building manpower and strengthening companies’ capabilities and expertise.

The Strategy also focuses on the coordination and integration between the components of the aviation organization by harmonizing its operations, and avoiding risks. The Strategy also places importance at restructuring Oman Air by adopting a comprehensive programme designed to address gaps and support growth through changing the Omani aviation business model, updating its network of destinations, developing its products, enhancing its sales and marketing capabilities, upgrading the level of integration with the travel and tourism sector in the Sultanate, and focusing on incoming tourists in the Sultanate in order to link Europe, Asia and the Middle East via Oman’s national carrier. This will enable Oman Air to truly become a premium destination airline, for a premium destination.

Dr. Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Futaisi, Minister of Transport, said that the Strategy will enable the aviation sector in the Sultanate to compete on a global level by an integrated organization that aims to secure a bigger share in the international aviation market. He also added that the aviation, logistics and travel sectors play an important role in achieving Oman Vision 2040’s main goals.

The National Aviation Strategy 2030 also focuses on enhancing and improving airports’ efficiency in line with the expected growth of the number of passengers. This will take into account the current and future operation size and will be aligned with the introduction of airport cities in order to increase the economic return.

Furthermore, the Strategy targets the logistics sector through a comprehensive air freight strategy that is intended to maintain air freight market share, and support the national industries in global markets. In addition, a logistics services regional centre will be established for international companies, which will increase freight traffic through the Sultanate’s airports through a number of initiatives including marketing the sector, allocating free zones to airport cities, achieving customs efficiency, and the availability of marine-air links.

The new Aviation Strategy did not overlook the tourism sector, and it will support linking the aviation and the tourism sectors by benefiting from the unique tourism potential that various Sultanate’s governorates enjoy. This will be done by addressing the decline in revenues of the sector and increasing the number of tourists coming into the Sultanate, which will strongly benefit economic return in all aspects.

The Strategy will benefit from digital innovation and technology, as this plays an important role in the success and improvement of aviation services with regards to logistics, marketing and communications, among others. As for the human aspect, the next stage will require training and qualification of a sufficient number of skilled teams to meet the needs of the sector, which is a very important aspect of the National Aviation Strategy.

Mustafa bin Mohammed al-Hinai, CEO of Oman Aviation Group said that in order to stimulate the comprehensive development of the travel, tourism and transportation industries in the Sultanate, the Oman Aviation Group, in cooperation with the esteemed Ministry of Tourism, is launching the online platform “National Travel Operator” in line with the National Tourism Strategy 2040 and the tourism distribution strategy for the aviation sector. The tourism distribution strategy for the aviation sector and the National Travel Operator are considered to be innovations that link the Sultanate with the rest of the world through a digital platform that effectively connects Omani travel providers with customers in target markets, and enhances Oman’s tourism image in these markets.

He added that this phase will focus on the impact of targeted sales to the Sultanate by harmonising the incentives of commercial partners. National Travel Operator will also work to raise the quality of tourism spending in the Sultanate. The platform and its goals will be enabled through digital solutions and advanced technology within the tourism system of the Sultanate.

He pointed out that the National Travel Operator adopts in the first stage companies operating in the travel sector in the Sultanate, such as public transport providers, hotels and airlines with global commercial markets, most notably in the United Kingdom (UK), Germany, France, Italy, Switzerland and India alongside the Gulf countries and others. This important step sets ambitious goals in increasing the number of tourists coming to the Sultanate, achieving financial sustainability, enabling investments in the travel and tourism sector and supporting local tourism to provide an integrated Omani travel experience.

As part of the National Aviation Strategy 2030, the Oman Aviation Group is adopting a master plan to launch Muscat Airport City. The plan aims to achieve the highest levels of utilisation of the new airport’s high capacity and the increasing air traffic, as well as takes advantage of the land areas surrounding the airport to create a stimulating environment for the establishment of aviation-related projects.

Muscat Airport City consists of five main areas: Muscat Airport Free Zone, which occupies an area of 3.3 million square meters devoted to light industries and storage activities for air freight, e-commerce, manufacturing and packaging of national products, in addition to aviation equipment, office spaces, an integrated service delivery station and public facilities, which are available to serve the users of the airport. 200,000 square meter logistics portal, an area designated for air freight services and logistics, which includes the air freight building at Muscat Airport. Business portal, which is a mixed-use project in an area of more than 1.1 million square meters and contains spaces designated for the office units of airlines and related economic sectors. An aviation portal in the city of Muscat Airport, which includes the passengers’ terminal area and the location of the previous air freight buildings in an area of 166 thousand square meters. This portal will host aviation, cultural and social activities, innovation centres for the aviation sector and a specialised emergency hospital serving the sector in accordance with global aviation safety regulations, and supporting social services. The project is being developed, in cooperation with the national economic sectors that contributed to the building of the aviation sector ecosystem during the previous era, and through new investments. It will be assigned to the private sector and SMEs. The hospitality portal, which occupies an area of 192,000 square meters, includes hospitality, duty-free shops, offices for travel companies and hotels for travellers or short-term visitors.

The launching ceremony, which was held at JW Marriot Hotel, was attended ministers, undersecretaries, public and private officials in the Sultanate.

Source: Oman News Agency