The $18.2m (OMR7m) purpose-built Oman Oil and Gas Institute, a centre for training the next generation of energy workers, has been officially opened in Innovation Park Muscat.

The 4,800m² institute houses a technical training centre, lecture halls, workshop rooms, classrooms, scientific laboratories, and a service building. It was inaugurated by the chairman of The Research Council, Sayyid Shihab Bin Tariq al-Said, an adviser to His Majesty the Sultan of Oman, Qaboos bin Said al Said.

It is the first-of-its-kind research complex in Oman dedicated to the training and development of the next-gen oil and gas workforce.

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Assistant secretary general for Innovation Development at The Research Council, Dr Fahd bin Al Julanda al-Said, who attended the inauguration, said: “We believe the Oman Oil and Gas Institute will make a significant contribution to the development of human resources and capabilities [because it will] employ scientific research and innovation to address the industry’s challenges facing human capital.”

He added that the launch of Oman Oil and Gas Institute was the first key stage of the Innovation Complex Muscat, a seven-storey building designed to facilitate scientific research in the Sultanate. Phase 1 construction of the Innovation Complex Muscat, which sits on an area of 540,000m² near the Sultan Qaboos Univeristy in Al Khoudh district, was reportedly completed in 2016. Phase 2 was earlier said to have started in 2018.

The institute is part of a joint venture between Oman Oil Company and Schlumberger Oman Company, which wants to ensure the education of future oil and gas workers meets the requirements of the market.

It was built as part of Oman’s five-year plan to enhance scientific diversification in the country, as it aims to develop innovations and technology to maximise the potential of the country’s oil and gas sector, a vital pillar of Oman’s economy.