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Community Relations

The vision of Community Relations is to partner with the community in order to preserve PDO’s social licence in its concession area, introduce sustainable development, minimise impact related to its operations, and establish solid engagement with stakeholders.  This is coupled with an enhancement of the portfolio’s resources and competencies.
 

The Community Relations (CR) Department has developed a long-term plan that identifies Company strengths and leverages them to provide a unique value to the local community in PDO’s concession area and thereby contribute to preserving PDO’s social licence. It aims to ensure that PDO has a harmonious, fruitful and constructive engagement with communities and all key stakeholders involved in development, such as ministries and public authorities involved in service provision.

How does CR contribute to PDO business?
  • Contribute to preserving PDO Social Licence in its concession by bringing sustainable value to the community
  • Minimise the impact of PDO operations on the community including Health, Safety and Environment (HSE) risks through early involvement  in projects and operations
  • Enhance positive impact and benefits associated with operations
  • Manage and resolve community issues associated with Company operations
  • Establish two-way engagement with relevant stakeholders
  • Boost reputation by raising awareness among local communities of PDO’s role in the economy and its positive contributions as a good neighbour. 
 

​By looking at the current context and case for change in comparison to where CR wants to be, several building blocks were identified to act as main themes. To realise each theme, Community Relations is driving several initiatives:

1. Business delivery: including, for example, working with major project teams to identify and manage community impacts, and community profiling for operational areas.

2. Stakeholder engagement: capacity building for local authorities on PDO operations, processes, and ways to co-operate, setting up a stakeholder engagement committee to share project progress and discuss community needs and issues.

3. Integration and development: Integrating with the business functions to support delivery of projects and operations with minimum disruption to operations and least harm to local communities.​​

 

4. Community benefits: Historically, Community Relations has supported on a number of benefits to local communities in the PDO concession area such as:

  • Water haulage: Potable water is delivered to many houses and camel Izbas of local communities in the north and south of the concession area,costing more than US$5 million per year.
  • Road grading: CR is also responsible for grading of more than 600 kilometres of road based on a specific annual programme.
  • Watchmen recruitment: Community Relations recruits an average of one thousand watchmen per year on a temporary basis to serve PDO operations, such as seismic activities and drilling, and as a means of support to locals residing close to PDO operation sites. The long-standing practice of recruitment iss undergoing major improvement and the establishment of new criteria to ensure fairness in distribution of positions and adherence to prevalent regulations.
  • Evaluation and perusal of community requests: Receiving,evaluating and submitting requests for community support from Interior stakeholders and the community.The requests are then tabled for endorsement by the PDO Grants and Donations or Social Investment (SI) Committees.
  • Follow-up on implementation of SI projects in the concession area: This is done in collaboration with relevant local authorities and contractors responsible for execution.
  • Community Scholarship Programme: Every year there are 200 scholarship offers to local community members to study in various colleges and universities in Oman. The students are given the absolute freedom in choosing the college/university and the major subject they want to study. The duration of their scholarship is five years.
  • Support in land allocation in the concession area: This is done to prevent allocating land where critical PDO operations are conducted or will be conducted in the future.