Oman’s Takamul Investment Company is expected to tender the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract on its planned ferrochrome smelter in Sohar during the first quarter of 2014.

The project’s feasibility study carried out by UK-based engineering group Mott Macdonald has been completed, according to a source close to the project. Ferrochrome is an alloy of chromium and iron used in the production of stainless steel.

The smelter will be located in Freezone Sohar along with three other ferrochrome plants either planned or under construction at Oman’s northern industrial port.

The other projects are being development by Oman’s Gulf Mining Materials, India’s Metkore Alloys and a joint venture of India-based Indsil Group and local chromite miner Al-Tammam Trading Establishment.

Takamul is 90 per cent owned by state-owned Oman Oil Company, with UAE-based Al-Maha and Abu Dhabi Water & Electricity Authority (Adwea) each holding 5 per cent stakes.