Our Insights

Oman workforce development

At our Sohar Aluminium Smelter project in Oman, we set out to increase the skills of Omani workers. There was a special focus on integrating women into the workforce, enabling them to take advantage of immediate smelter construction work—and pursue future opportunities. Together with the Oman Ministry of Manpower and Rusayl Institute, a local training institute, we established a new construction work and life-skills training program, along with the first construction-training program for women. The courses included four- to six-month classroom and on-the-job training sessions tailored to local craft skills. We also offered courses in environmental, safety, and health practices; financial literacy; English; and—to prepare workers for careers after we complete construction—computers.


  • 1,900  Omanis employed at the peak of construction
  • 868 Omanis trained and hired as electricians and carpenters, and in other skilled positions
  • 112 people transitioned to smelter operations jobs after construction
  • 30 percent of all mechanical assistants on the project were Bechtel-trained Omani women

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