Sohar Aluminium announced earlier this week a partnership with Indian aluminium alloy wheel manufacturer Synergies Castings to build a US$100 million production factory in Oman.
Per Sohar, the plant will be constructed next door to its own plant at Sohar Industrial Estate, with construction to commence presently. The first aluminium wheels to roll off the production line are expected in 2020.
When fully commissioned, the plant will have an aluminium supply stream of 24 thousand metric tons per annum supplied by Sohar for production of high-end aluminium wheels for passenger cars. Upon full ramp-up, the plant is slated to produce 2.5 million units per annum with a workforce of approximately 500. Sohar says the plant’s customers would primarily be automakers.
Eng. Said Al Masoudi, Sohar Aluminium’s Chief Executive Officer, touted the significant benefits to locating such a plant adjacent to Sohar’s own operations.
“We are offering them proximity to raw materials, a significant value proposition that provides our downstream customers with a distinct energy cost advantage. This initiative is also in sync with our intent to build beneficial relationships with local suppliers as well as customers from Oman and abroad in order to deliver sustainable In-Country Value (ICV) for Oman.”
Khalid Al Kimyani, Chairman of Synergies Castings, noted the benefits to both companies in the arrangement.
“Oman’s abundant resources combined with its growing economy and infrastructure make it an ideal win-win agreement. With Sohar Aluminium as a supplier, our expansion in this region will further help us deliver quality around the world.”
Born of a desire by the Omani government to begin to diversify its economy away from petroleum, Sohar Aluminium was founded in the fall of 2004 and is jointly owned by Oman Oil Company (40%), Abu Dhabi National Energy Company PJSC – TAQA (40%), and Rio Tinto Alcan (20%). The US$2.5-billion joint venture produced 375 thousand metric tons of aluminium in 2016.