Petroleum Development Oman (PDO) has committed to support a raft of new initiatives to benefit communities and boost sustainable development across the Sultanate.
The programme includes commitments in the key areas of health and safety, community infrastructure, employability training, charities, and animal welfare.
At an official ceremony at PDO’s Muscat headquarters, 18 memorandums of understanding (MoUs) relating to the support were signed under the auspices of the guest of honour, Dr Ahmed Mohammed Obaid Al Saidi, minister of health, Sultanate of Oman.
The package includes the funding of a new in-patient ward for the neurology department at Khoula Hospital and an echocardiography machine for Al Nahdha Hospital, both in the capital, to support thousands of patients, 50 adjustable beds for physiotherapy and rehabilitation treatment for elderly and disabled people, and a new ambulance for Al Mashash Health Centre in Masqshan.
Among a range of infrastructure commitments, PDO is backing a new Food and Water Control Laboratory in Haima to cater for the research and analysis needs of Al Wusta Governorate, and the construction of a walkpath with outdoor sport equipment to help communities exercise outdoors in the public park in Dhank.
Another infrastructure pledge is for the renovation and maintenance of the 450-metre falaj at Al Mughbariyha in Samayel, an important irrigation channel for agriculture and palm trees.
PDO managing director Raoul Restucci said: “Our commitment and support is targeted at meeting pressing community needs through the provision of important facilities and services to support the safety and health of residents.”
“Our mantra is that we only succeed if the communities in which we operate succeed, and these programmes will undoubtedly empower citizens and afford them new opportunities for many years to come.”
“We are delighted to be able to sign these latest commitments which will make a tangible difference to the lives of thousands of people across Oman with our valued government, municipal and non-governmental partners.”
To boost employment, PDO is also backing an employability skills programme for 30 jobseekers in Bahla to help them secure work.
The company will also donate eight new mobile veterinary clinics for Ibri, Adam Thumrait, Bahla, Al Jazir, Shaleem, Maqshan and Haima to improve the wellbeing of livestock and boost the local economy in rural areas. This follows the donation last year of 12 mobile veterinary clinics currently in use across the Sultanate.
Another important milestone is PDO’s renewed commitment to a new batch of nine non-governmental organisations and professional associations to help them deliver their business plans and support and integrate vulnerable people into society. These organisations include the Association for the Welfare of Handicapped Children, Al Wafa Rehabilitation Centres for Disabled Children, the Omani Bahjah Orphan Society (Salalah), the Oman Autism Society, and the Omar Bin Khattab Institute for the Blind.
Co-signatories to the MoUs included the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, as well as the Walis of Bahla, Samayel and Dhank and representatives from grassroots organisations.
Dr Darwish bin Saif Al Muharbi, undersecretary, Ministry of Health for Administrative and Financial Affairs, said: “The Ministry of Health sees PDO as an important partner through its continuous and important contributions that have helped in achieving the noble objectives of the Ministry in providing public healthcare. PDO is a leading establishment for corporate social responsibility in the country.”
Shaikh Maadhad bin Mohammd al Yaqubi, governor, Al Wusta, said: “We highly appreciate PDO's role in the field of social investment, which has undoubtedly created a strong relationship between the company and the local community.”