By Andy Sambidge
FATA, a unit of Finmeccanica, set to start construction of production facility in Sohar in July
Italian company FATA, a unit of Finmeccanica, has won a $385m contract with Oman Aluminium Rolling Company to build a new production facility in Sohar.
Construction work is expected to start in July with production slated to start in August 2013, the company said.
The factory will have an annual capacity of 160,000 tonnes, while FATA Hunter, a subsidiary, will supply a hot rolling mill along with cold rolling and finishing equipment.
Anthony Tropeano, CEO of FATA, said: "The project will provide 275 direct jobs at full production...FATA estimates the employment levels during construction will peak at approximately 1,200 persons."
The rolling mill will serve the aluminium food container and food preservation foil markets, along with material for the automotive heat exchanger and air conditioning markets, he added.
Tropeano said the project was in response to "growing regional demand", while sales are also expected to reach international markets.
The mill will be supplied molten metal from Sohar Aluminium Company which is located close to the new rolling mill site.
Sales agreements with GARMCO in Bahrain are in place to market the mill's products until an in-house sales and marketing team is established in the coming years, he added.