Oman is set to develop a $1.3bn waterfront development around Port Sultan Qaboos in Muscat.

According to state news agency ONA the development will be entirely financed through the private sector. “Financing will be arranged through pension funds and private sector investment, with no government cash involved”, state news agency quoted Minister of Transport and Communications Ahmed bin Mohammed al-Futaisi as saying.

The project, due to be completed over four phases up to 2027, will be 51 per cent state-owned through the Oman Tourism Development Company (Omran) and the remaining 49 per cent will be held by investors.

The waterfront development will span 451,000 square metres, and will include hotels, as well as residential apartments and houses around the marina.

Due to budget cuts, Omran is planning to increase the level of private sector funding and involvement in its projects. The tourism sector is a key part of Oman’s development strategy.

On 4 January MEED reported Salah al-Ghazali, the acting chief investment officer and Omran saying “New development funding arrangements such as these reflect the growing number of opportunities for private sector equity involvement and the rise of mutual partnerships. “We are currently finalising a new investment strategy at Omran that capitalises on these emerging opportunities for tourism development.”