NTITECHPRO 2019 CELEBRATES TECHNICAL EXCELLENCE IN OMAN
The Sultanate witnessed the inception of NTI TechPro Conference and Awards, the country’s first Technical Vocational Skills Conference and Awards, at the Grand Millennium Muscat Hotel recently. Organised in association with United Media Services (UMS) Group by National Training Institute (NTI), the ceremony commemorated the nation’s brightest technical talent and used the forum to discuss the way forward for the technical education sector. The event was held under the auspices of HH Sayyid Tarik bin Shabib, Director, Renaissance Services SAOG.
Spanning over a day, the event was attended by nearly 700 of the Sultanate’s leading industry figures, corporate officials, luminaries, and technical professionals across the morning and evening sessions. The technical conference was inaugurated by HE Dr. Muna Salim Al Jardani, Undersecretary, Ministry of Manpower and the award ceremony held with HE Dr. Mohammed bin Hamad Al Rumhy, Minister of Oil and Gas and HE Salim bin Nasser Al Aufi, Undersecretary, Ministry of Oil and Gas as Guests of Honour.
NTI TechPro 2019 Conference and Awards was organised with the fundamental theme – ‘A skilled workforce today, for a sustainable tomorrow’ and was trending under the hashtag – ‘#TechSkillsOman’. The event benefitted individuals as it raised awareness on nurturing their technical and vocational skill levels and provided further impetus to the nation’s ICV roadmap. This will further build momentum to accelerate individual technical careers, as well as envision the development of the country’s technical sector.
Congratulating the winners of the awards, and thanking all the event partners and sponsors for their support - Lawrence Alva, CEO of NTI stated, “I believe the future of the Sultanate is dependent on the development and growth of Omanis. As part of the country’s economic diversification and employment generation agenda, it is essential to focus on training and nurturing a citizen workforce that is proficient in technical skills. The NTI TechPro 2019 has been established on the same belief and we hope it will bring change in perception, create opportunity and give recognition towards achievement in technical skills and training.”
Atulya Sharma, CEO, UMS, the event partner of NTI TechPro Conference and Awards averred, “By bringing young Omanis who are driving technical growth and innovation to the forefront, the event aims at encouraging participating individuals, as well as corporates, to step forward, mark and acknowledge their contributions in a broad manner. We also hope that the young generation will use this environment to facilitate the exchange of ideas for the future development of technicians within the industry. This is in line with UMS Group’s efforts to support the Sultanate’s ideology of building a nation for Omanis by Omanis, by assisting them to be the leaders of tomorrow.”
The conference held in morning entailed in-depth, interactive
sessions including two panel discussions emphasizing on the ‘Technician’s Expectations, Aspirations, and Challenges at the Workplace’ followed by ‘Expectations and Challenges at the Workplace’ from an employer’s standpoint.
Dr Wail Saif Al Harrasi, Founder and CEO, WABAS Enterprises and Investments in his key-note address, praised the efforts of technicians in the growth of the economy and added that talent identification and nurturing is vital. “Winners are those who capitalise on opportunities, while losers are those who miss out on opportunities.”
Manufacturing sector is a key element of economic diversification, he said adding that technicians have a significant role to play in the economy. He also highlighted the need to harness the enormous potential of the human capital and called upon technicians to be receptive to new technologies.
The speakers also discussed the ‘employers’ role in developing technicians’ and ‘apprenticeship schemes (Omanisation scope)’ followed by the evening session consisting of a CEO panel on – ‘Technician’s for Today and Tomorrow: Best Practices and Challenges’ and the award ceremony in the end. A guest speaker from Petroleum Development Oman also enlightened the audience by sharing his viewpoints on ‘Expectations and Challenges from Training for Employment Program Experience.’ All speakers concluded that progress is still needed to address the skills mismatch and the market competitiveness, calling out to future Omanis to hone their skillsets. They also wished to see better partnerships between corporates and educational institutions and anticipated an increased participation by students to win the future editions of the NTI TechPro Awards.
Mobeen Chaudri, Associate Partner, KPMG Lower Gulf briefed the audience about the rigorous assessment process that went into the evaluation for the awards. Shedding light on the significance of the event, he mentioned: “Technical expertise is essential in boosting the nation’s economy and is consistent with the vision of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said of building a fruitful future for Oman. Congruent to this, the NTI TechPro Conference and Awards 2019 have served as a stepping stone for talented young Omanis working in the technical field; bringing them together to discuss important aspects related to the industry, and inspiring them to become the technical leaders of tomorrow.”
The all-day event came to a close with the NTI TechPro Awards being held in the evening, felicitating winners under the higher secondary and diploma holder category. The former category was subcategorised into Mechanical, Welding, Instrumentation and Electrical while the latter was divided into Electrical, Operators, Instrumentation, Mechanical and Chemical Process. The biggest accolade of the evening, ‘The Technician of the Year Award’ was also given to an individual demonstrating substantive contributions to the technical field. Apart from receiving a glittering trophy and certificate, the winners were also rewarded with an upgrade to a level 3 qualification by NTI. The NTI TechPro Awards were also given to a few selected companies for their ‘Exceptional contribution in developing local talent and fuelling Oman’s economy’.
The event was powered by industry stalwarts - Petroleum Development Oman, Renaissance Services SAOG, Oman Oil and Orpic Group, Oman LNG LLC, AREEJ Vegetable Oils & Derivatives SAOC, Voltamp Group, Al Tasnim Group, Genetco and ENGIE STOMO.