The Business Year

Hilal Al Kharusi

OMAN - Energy & Mining

Hilal Al Kharusi

Acting Chief Commercial Officer, OQ

Bio

With over 29 years of wealth of international business experience in the energy sector, Hilal Al Kharusi is responsible for developing and driving OQ’s global retail business strategy locally and internationally. He started his career with Petroleum Development Oman and Shell International. Prior to joining OQ, he was the executive vice president for emerging businesses at Oman Oil Company. Currently, Al Kharusi serves as board chairman in Oman Oil Marketing Company and chairman of Oman Sustainable Water Services. He holds a bachelor’s degree in geosciences – economic geography and an MBA from the UK.

With operations in 17 countries, OQ has managed to expand, diversify, and strengthen its customer base across the globe.

How far is OQ commercial expansion footprint globally?

Although it has its roots in Oman, OQ is creating a global footprint by leveraging its assets and commercial footprint around the world. We are a global integrated energy company operating in 17 countries. This has helped us to expand, diversify, and strengthen our customer base across the globe. OQ covers the entire value chain from exploration and production to marketing and sales/distribution of industrial and end-user products. With our fuels, polymers, and chemicals sold in over 60 countries, we are already a key player in the global energy sector. OQ’s presence in the global market is also one of the key drivers of company’s strategy moving forward. Keeping our strategic future growth and development in focus, while we are currently prioritizing pursuing and developing business opportunities in Oman, at the same we are also looking at newer and emerging markets and are keen to explore promising opportunities to invest and promote our products globally.

Can you provide updates on the retail business and ongoing strategic partnership between OQ and OOMCO?

OQ’s retail business is a way of getting closer to our end users. The company’s retail investments are a move to cushion the volatility the group’s revenues may face, diversify its earnings, and gain more market share locally, regionally, and globally. As per the OQ 2030 Group Strategy, retail is one of three key strategic initiatives for growth covering marketing and retail business. The strategic partnership with OOMCO covers these aspects and much more. OOMCO will source all its fuel from OQ refineries via a long-term agreement to serve its 225-plus stations.

What are some of the major commercial investment opportunities in the Sultanate and beyond considering the current economic environment?

The last two years have been fairly challenging, more so because of the pandemic, which accelerated the existing economic slowdown and affected the overall business environment. OQ, however, was able to continue to sell its products and retain its customer base with the support of its regional presence globally. This has also helped the company maintain a positive outlook despite market challenges to its existing businesses and seize new and exciting opportunities to further strengthen the brand in the global marketplace. Global sales and the distribution of polymers is also another example of success despite COVID-19-related market challenges, and OQ has successfully marketed new polymers produced in Oman. To that end, OQ recently completed the restructuring of its existing trading division as an independent global business entity. Through this strategic move, OQ will ensure the creation of a center for excellence by building and maintaining the required levels of competency, create and sell sustainable products, and encourage knowledge sharing, best practices, and fair trade globally.

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