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Oman set for building boom

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Warehouses and small offices will be in demand in Oman this year, according to a comprehensive report

Global chartered surveyors and analysts Cluttons found that the industrial sector was likely to see the most growth in Oman in 2012.

The country, which borders the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Yemen, is well within the reach of the Middle East offices of many large UK architects.

Cluttons said development of an industrial city at Duqm; increased clarity about government logistics plans; and continued investment in transport and power infrastructure would boost Oman’s industrial sector.

Its report said: ‘There will be an increasing demand for bespoke, international-quality warehousing facilities as more companies are drawn the Sultanate, seeking modern and efficient facilities.

‘Cluttons expects to see an increased development of warehousing, particularly in the Barka area and new industry-free zones in Salalah and Sohar.’

In the commercial sector, Cluttons said four new developments would add more than 150,000m² of Grade A office space to the market. But it found that demand would remain strong for spaces up to 500m².

‘Flexibility in office design, to cater for smaller space occupiers, will be vital,’ it said.

Cluttons predicted similar continued demand for smaller retail space, but said many tenants were searching for space within proven centres.

The report predicted a two-tier residential market where well-designed properties maintained stable rental values and high occupancy rates while poorly designed spaces suffered declining rental values and increasing voids.

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