Sohar, December 2016 – Under the auspices of H.E. Sheikh Muhanna bin Saif Al Lamki, Governor of North Al Batinah, Sohar Aluminium opened the doors to the Sultanate’s first Aluminium Handicrafts Centre. Situated at Sohar Aluminium, the Centre was launched in collaboration with the Public Authority for Craft Industries (PACI), and will facilitate training programs designed to empower traditional artisans with the skills required to create authentic Omani handicrafts out of aluminium and establish their own business enterprises.


The event also celebrated the graduation of nine craftswomen from a three-year Aluminium Craft Industries Program. Launched in 2013 and funded by Sohar Aluminium, the certified programme encompasses a number of capacity building and professional courses including English-language proficiency, business writing, product marketing, business and financial management, and quality control in addition to human resource development. Artisans are also empowered with knowledge of different materials and machines, design, safety regulations as well as training in aluminium manufacturing.


 “The handicrafts industry plays an important role in not only helping preserve our cultural heritage but driving social as well as economic growth through the creation of small-medium enterprises,” said Said Al Masoudi, CEO of Sohar Aluminium. “We have always centred our efforts in investing and building human capacity for achieving developmental objectives and from this concept we decided to initiate this program and establish an SME, named “Siwar” for aluminium craft industries and handicrafts."


Hamood Al Qasmi, Crafts Industries Department Manager in North Al Batinah Governorate delivered a speech during the event. Al Qasmi said, “We look forward to see “Siwar Company” which was established as a result of this Program as a specialized aluminium craft industries company capable of continuing on the path of success, and to progress towards new horizons driven by development and innovation, a company that is capable of meeting the requirements of local and international needs through this craft by integration, development and innovation.”



The launch of the Aluminium Handicraft Centre is part of Sohar Aluminium’s longstanding commitment to supporting the sustainable development of the local communities it serves. Other initiatives include an active volunteering programme, investment in social infrastructure, promoting entrepreneurship and small and medium businesses development. Beneficiaries not only include neighbouring communities, but also educational institutions, hospitals and polyclinics, non-government organizations, and non-profit bodies.


Sohar Aluminium was formed in September 2004 to undertake a landmark Greenfield aluminium smelter project in the Sultanate of Oman. It is jointly owned by Oman Oil Company, Abu Dhabi National Energy Company PJSC - TAQA and Rio Tinto.