Monday, November 09, 2009

KOM & Royal Visit

Knowledge Oasis Muscat (KOM) rolled out the red carpet recently when His Royal Highness the Duke of York visited Oman's flagship technology park.

The Duke of York, who was visiting KOM in his capacity as The UK’s Special Representative for International Trade and Investment, was met by His Excellency Maqbool bin Ali Sultan, Minister of Commerce & Industry and presented to key KOM Management personnel.

Mohammed Al Maskari, KOM’s Director General commented: “KOM is home to 60 hi-tech firms and over 3,000 undergraduates, we've a marvellous mix of multinationals, SMEs, start-ups and students – this is a unique combination and one that can't be found on any other technology park in the region. We were very proud to welcome His Royal Highness and delighted that we were able to update him on the Park's progress.”

KOM is expanding its offer with the construction of a 40,000 square metre office facility – and according to Al Maskari, the new development represents a significant investment by the government in the sultanate's ICT sector.

“The new building is a testament to the success of KOM and the interest the Park has generated in both domestic and international ICT circles,” remarked the Park’s Director General.

Minister Maqbool held bilateral trade talks with the Duke of York and joined him in a presentation delivered by KOM and the Serious Games Institute (SGI) where both men were briefed on two high profile virtual world projects being created by a KOM – SGI team.

“Our partnership with Coventry University’s SGI involves the digitization of the new KOM building and its placement in Second Life. We're also digitizing and creating a virtual Bahla Fort. Given that the fort is a UNESCO World Heritage site the project will be of substantial value in marketing the sultanate particularly in the tourism and heritage space,” smiled Al Maskari.

Responding, The Duke of York congratulated KOM on its partnership with SGI, its expansion and success in attracting international technology firms to set-up in Oman.

Al Maskari concluded: “The Duke of York's visit was recognition of the role KOM plays in Oman's technology community. We’ve world class facilities that provide a fantastic working environment. Having His Royal Highness here is recognition of not just what’s being achieved on KOM but its contribution to Omani society at large.”

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