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Study says Oman's Masairah Island bridge has 'no economic feasibility'

A top official said the $1.3bn project has been analysed by Oman's transport ministry

Oman's transport ministry has studied a bridge project linking the country's mainland to Masairah Island [representational image].
Oman's transport ministry has studied a bridge project linking the country's mainland to Masairah Island [representational image].

The construction of a bridge connecting Oman’s mainland to the Masairah Island has “no economic feasibility”, the sultanate’s Ministry of Transport and Communications has found.

According to a report by state news agency, ONA, Dr Ahmed bin Mohammed al-Futaisi, Oman’s Minister of Transport and Communications, said the bridge project and its location had been studied by his ministry.

READ: Oman unveils causeway project to Masirah Island [2013]

A study conducted by specialised consultants found that project costs would total $1.3bn (OMR500m), and that “there is no economic feasibility of the project”, the report stated. Al-Futaisi said the ministry would submit the project study to Oman’s Supreme Council for Planning.

These findings were revealed during a ministry meeting held in Oman’s Duqm wilayat, during which the authority’s major projects were reviewed. The meeting was aimed at reviewing the ministry’s projects in Al Wusta governorate, and listening to project suggestions from Omani citizens.

During the meeting, it was revealed that the ministry is working with Special Economic Zone Authority in Duqm to complete the Mahout-Duqm road. Additionally, work is under way to complete the Adam-Haima road, which is due before the end of 2019. The latter project is currently 75% complete. Designs and studies for the Haima-Thumrait road have also been completed, and are due to be submitted to relevant parties, the ministry said.

Additional points discussed during the meeting included updates on the new Oman Maritime Law, and flight services from Muscat International Airport to Duqm Airport.

READ: Eight firms bid on Masirah causeway study contract [2013]

In October 2015, a joint venture (JV) of Oman’s National Engineering Office and South Korea’s Dohwa Engineering and Pyunghwa Engineering Consultants was awarded the ministry’s consultancy contract for a bridge linking Masairah Island with Shannah.

According to Oman Daily Observer, the JV was picked to carry out a social and economic feasibility study of the project, as well as create an initial design and financial plan for the scheme.

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