UAE | General

Oman farmers offered stake in date processing plant

For the first time, Omani date farmers will become shareholders in a date processing plant when it is commissioned. The $30 million project will come up in Sohar, Oman's second biggest industrial estate after the Rusayl Industrial Estate in the capital, Muscat.

  • By Arif Ali
  • Published: 00:00 December 9, 2000
  • Gulf News

For the first time, Omani date farmers will become shareholders in a date processing plant when it is commissioned. The $30 million project will come up in Sohar, Oman's second biggest industrial estate after the Rusayl Industrial Estate in the capital, Muscat.

According to Omani newspaper reports, the 30,000 tonne facility will process inferior quality dates into liquid sugar, vinegar, yeast, pharmaceutical alcohol and mineral blocks for cattle-feed - all of which are currently imported.

Oman produces about 260,000 tonnes of dates a year, a good part of which goes waste for a lack of a market. Some 90,000 tonnes of dates were rendered surplus last year. Date producing countries in the Middle East generate about two million tonnes of fresh dates annually, effectively ensuring an unlimited supply of raw material for the project.

The biggest beneficiary will be the small-time date farmers, who will be offered a 30 per cent share in the company's equity. The project was conceived by Mariono Capdevilla, an industrial consultant appointed by Spain's state-owned Expansion Exterior to promote Spain's commercial interests in Oman.

According to Capdevilla, who also represents Spain's giant Actemsa, which has 20 per cent stake in Dhofar Fisheries Indus-tries Co coming up in Salalah, a sample shipment of 2,000 kilos of Omani dates was recently shipped to Italy.

"We are greatly heartened by the results of the trials so far, which are being carried out at a pilot plant near Genoa, Italy." The sample dates, harvested from farms in the Batinah region, were provided by the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries.

Gulf News
Latest news
Community Reports

More from Community Reports

Quick Links

  1. Business

  2. Sport

  3. The latest Entertainment news

  4. The latest Lifestyle stories

  5. Opinion

Gulf Country Finder

  1. The latest news from the UAE

  2. Saudi Arabia

  3. Qatar

  4. Bahrain

  5. Oman

  6. Kuwait

  7. Yemen

Region Country Finder

  1. Syria

  2. Palestinian territories

  3. Jordan

  4. Lebanon

  5. Iran

  6. Iraq

  7. Egypt

Influencers

  1. United States of America

  2. India

  3. Pakistan

  4. United Kingdom

Regions

  1. Gulf

  2. Region

  3. The latest news from around the world