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Bank Nizwa continues to support the logistics sector; signs first sustainable finance agreement with Shanfari Special Projects LLC

Muscat. 9th April 2022. Highlighting the far-reaching financial and societal benefits of integrating sustainable finance into business, Bank Nizwa recently signed its first sustainable finance agreement with Shanfari Special Projects LLC (SSP). With Hutchison Ports Sohar commencing construction work to develop its new solar-powered integrated inspection facility, SSP was trusted with the responsibility of installing the scanning equipment for the project. Bank Nizwa’s sustainable finance agreement will play an instrumental role in supporting SSP to source its requirements from Rapiscan, the chosen vendor for the project.

The agreement was signed by Mr Khalid Al Kayed, CEO of Bank Nizwa and Sheikh Nizar Al Shanfari, Chairman of SSP in presence of Mr R. Narasimhan, General Manger Wholesale at Bank Nizwa and Mr Khalid al Barwani, Deputy General Manager Wholesale Banking among other senior officials.

An integral component of the project is the installation of a solar energy system on the new infrastructure, the existing buildings, and the car parking areas. This will be done to supplement the power requirements and will result in the reduction of approximately 5,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions per year. This is a significant step towards achieving the sustainable development goals of the country.

“As a sister company of the Shanfari Group of Companies, SSP has been a significant contributor to the nation’s goals and mirrors values that are quite similar to ours. We are indeed delighted to join hands with such a reputable company to promote the logistics sector through sustainable financing solutions. The project’s green concept of supplementing its energy requirements through renewable, clean sources of energy is in line with Oman Vision 2040. As such, Bank Nizwa is deeply invested in its success,” said Mr. Khaled Al Kayed, CEO of Bank Nizwa. “With the country’s renewed commitment to achieving net-zero emissions and the continuous endeavours to foster a green and circular economy, sustainable financing is gaining increasing traction in the market. As a Sharia-compliant bank that places immense importance on inclusivity, ethicality, and transparency, Bank Nizwa has remained ahead of the curve to spearhead sustainable finance initiatives in the country.”

Embracing the latest advancements in innovation and container scanning capabilities, the modern inspection facility, valued at $30 million, will be a part of the terminal development plans to enhance the inspection services for inbound and outbound containers and provide transformational clearing processes. The project will facilitate the quicker clearance of both normal and refrigerated containers and aid in the express movement of goods. This will also boost Oman’s ranking in the Logistics Performance Index while contributing to the ongoing development of the national economy.

Sharing his comments, Sheikh Nizar Al Shanfari, said, “At SSP, we endeavour to be able to offer exceptional service, dependability and quality to our customers around the world. Our projects exemplify this commitment and we continue to move forward with conviction to deliver modern day solutions that support the environmental, and sustainability goals of the Sultanate. We are thankful to Bank Nizwa for supporting us in this journey as we aim to emerge as one of Oman’s largest industrial and services conglomerates, and a valuable contributor to the development of the nation’s infrastructure.”

The scanning systems supplied by SSP is ideally suited to help customers fight trade fraud and drug smuggling, and to combat terrorism. The high-quality X-ray imaging creates detailed images of dense and cluttered cargo to increase the efficiency of scanning operations. The screening system is high penetration and high wire resolution result in clear images that provide deep insight into the contents of cargo containers. The Scanners are high-energy X-ray, drive-through portal cargo inspection system for fast, accurate and efficient cargo screening. Its ability to rapidly scan trucks supports inspection at critical facilities, seaports and border crossings. The X-ray beam is automatically activated after the truck cab passes through the portal, so that the occupants are not exposed to an unsafe dose of radiation.

Bank Nizwa’s Wholesale banking division is well catered to serve diversified and growing economic activity of the Sultanate. The Wholesale banking division has 12 units to support the corporate requirements of SMEs, Mid corporates, Large corporates, projects and Government division. The bank offers highly specialized Trade finance, treasury and investment products. The innovative corporate internet banking and transaction banking help the cash management requirement of all the corporate clients.

Bank Nizwa’s involvement in this project is a testament to its commitment to achieving the goals outlined in the Sultanate of Oman’s Logistics Strategy (SOLS) 2040. It also cements its position as a leading Islamic bank that contributes to the local sustainability ecosystem. Through partnerships like these, the bank will continue to extend its support to key national projects and aid in the socio-economic development of the country.