News & Events

June, 2015

SOHAR Port and Freezone makes another grand entrance at Automechanika

SOHAR Port and Freezone is gearing up for its second appearance at Automechanika, in Dubai’s World Trade Centre. This year’s SOHAR stand will feature a professional race-car simulator, where visitors can test their driving skills on the legendary Yas Marina Circuit. The fastest drivers will have the chance to win two tickets to any of this year’s remaining Grand Prix races.


Over 200,000 vehicles a year are now imported through SOHAR Port. Many of these imports move straight to SOHAR Freezone where a new automobile cluster with a state-of-the-art

presales finishing centre is nearing completion. The cluster handles world-class brands including Toyota, Daihatsu, Lexus, Kia, Ford, Nissan, BMW and Hyundai.



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Automechanika Dubai has developed a reputation as an unrivalled trade and networking event for the automobile business in the broader Middle East region. Last year’s show was a huge success, attracting nearly 29,000 visitors and buyers from 130 countries. It is hoped that Automechanika Dubai 2015 will attract further significant investment into the Port and Freezone.



Freezone CEO, Jamal Aziz, said: “SOHAR Port and our growing Freezone offer many opportunities for investors with our perfect mix of land capacity, reasonable labour costs and cheap energy.” He continued: “Our automobile cluster is one of the fastest growing sectors:

not only is SOHAR Freezone an ideal new car distribution hub, we also offer automobile parts manufacturers an abundant and direct supply of steel, aluminium and plastics.”


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So far, more than $21 billion has been pumped into creating a world-class facility, with SOHAR’s growing popularity contributing to lease agreements being signed for the first phase of the Freezone almost three years ahead of schedule.


The booming GCC states, especially Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, are easily accessible on new and uncongested highways, and will soon be linked by rail, meaning SOHAR is well placed to take advantage of high growth in vehicle sales across the GCC region. According to analysts Frost & Sullivan, the sale of new cars is expected to record a CAGR of 6% for the period 2012-2017, with Saudi Arabia and the UAE offering the largest regional markets; spare parts sales are expected to double by 2017, to US$13.46 billion.


SOHAR Port CEO, Andre Toet, summed it up: “The automobile industry is part of the DNA of this region; as a facilitator of trade and investment in the automotive industry, it doesn’t get much better than Automechanika. We hope today’s event will act as a springboard and help us continue building strong partnerships that will better serve Oman’s economy and its people”.



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