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Oman Breaks Ground for a 520-million polysilicon facility in sohar freezone

In line with Oman’s industrial strategy to attract investment in setting up advanced industries, the foundation stone will be laid today for a major polysilicon production facility at Sohar Freezone, with an investment exceeding $1.35bn (RO520mn).

The project is being set up by United Solar Polysilicon (FZC) SPC, an Omani company, on an area of 160,000 sqm. It is expected to be completed during 2025.

The polysilicon plant will produce high-quality metallurgical silicon with an annual capacity of 100,000 tonnes. The production process involves pouring the liquid metallurgical silicon from the furnace into molds, followed by cooling through either mold or continuous casting. After cooling, the metallurgical silicon is ground and packaged for global export.

Polysilicon, a high-purity form of silicon, is a key raw material in the production of solar photovoltaic (PV) panels.

This huge project reflects the Omani government’s keenness to encourage local investment and attract foreign investors, as part of the objectives of Oman Vision 2040.

The foundation stone laying ceremony will be held under the auspices of H E Sultan Salim Said al Habsi, Minister of Finance.

Commenting on the project in a statement, H E Dr Saleh bin Said Masan, Undersecretary for Commerce and Industry at the Ministry of Commerce, Industry, and Investment Promotion, emphasised the paramount importance of the industrial sector as a major driver for achieving comprehensive development in Oman.

H E Masan noted that United Solar Polysilicon’s project is among the significant investment projects in Oman and this project represents the first of its kind in the Middle East region.

“This project underscores the significance of the industrial sector in achieving the envisioned economic diversification goals outlined in Oman Vision 2040. Additionally, it showcases the sector’s prowess in attracting substantial foreign investments, fostering business growth, and creating new industrial opportunities,” H E Masan said.

He added that the project holds the promise of a more sustainable future for the Sohar Port and Freezone by increasing handling capacity in the years to come.

As H E Masan emphasised, Oman’s Industrial Strategy 2040 targets various industries, placing specific emphasis on knowledge-based sectors reliant on research & development, and advanced technology.

The sultanate’s strategy aims to boost the integration of modern technologies and leverage innovation within the framework of a knowledge-based economy, establishing industries firmly rooted in knowledge.

H E Masan highlighted that this strengthens Oman’s position as a key player in the global technological and industrial arena.

“This polysilicon project will enhance the status of the Sohar Port and Freezone as a global trade hub. Furthermore, it represents a significant achievement in the region’s economic growth and diversification, meeting the growing demand for metallurgical silicon in the markets of Asia, Europe, and North America,” he said.

The project reflects the sincere desire to continue the efforts initiated by Oman to encourage local investment, attract foreign investments, localise their operations, and align with the goals of the future Oman Vision 2040.

In January, Shuangliang Eco-Energy Co, a manufacturer of solar material processing equipment and a subsidiary of China-based Shuangliang Group, announced that it received an equipment order from United Solar Polysilicon (FZC) SPC valued at $58.32mn.

Shuangliang will supply polycrystalline silicon reduction furnaces, hydrogen production equipment, and refrigeration units for the high-purity polysilicon plant in Sohar.

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