Oman is set to invest $7 billion in the next 20 years – averaging $381 million per year – to develop wastewater treatment plants and extend sewage network lines across the country.
A report by the Supreme Council for Planning revealed the huge level of investment which will be carried out through the National Strategy for the Use of Tertiary-treated Wastewater 2040 program.
As of 2016, 98.7 percent of the population in Oman benefited from safe drinking water services, with desalinated water accounting for over 86 percent of the total drinking water needs.
The report said: “Desalinated water production increased from 196 million cubic meters in 2011 to 311 million cubic meters by the end of 2018.”
Other sources of drinking water, such as wells, contribute approximately 14 percent.
Sanitation and hygiene services cover more than 98 percent of the population in urban areas and 97 percent in rural areas, and as of 2018, 68 wastewater treatment plants were established, producing around 94 million m3/year of tertiary treated wastewater, about 61 percent of which is being used in agriculture, aesthetic afforestation, refrigeration, and injection of coastal aquifers.
The report added: “The Sultanate seeks to improve its various systems and activities; increase water supply reliability; boost operational efficiency; further upgrade services; and implement strategies to develop and enhance human resources, subscriber services, health, safety, and the environment, information technology, water quality, and project management.
“Moreover, a strategy was prepared to manage water loss, which brought losses down from 43.4 percent in 2010 to 23 percent in 2018. Contingency strategy and plans were also elaborated in collaboration with other stakeholders in the country.”