|Port of Duqm|
The agreement, supporting development at the booming Duqm Port complex, will provide vital engineering work and support to the world’s naval vessels, including the UK’s new Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers.
Speaking on a visit to Oman today, Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said, "This partnership will bring British engineering expertise to help develop Duqm as a strategic port for the Middle East on the Indian Ocean, benefiting the Royal Navy and others.
"It demonstrates how our long term commitment to the Middle East is promoting our security and prosperity."
The Duqm port project provides significant opportunity to the defence, security and prosperity agendas for both the UK and Oman. A permanent presence at Duqm would enable the UK to shape the development of the naval facility to support future carrier capability and wider British maritime needs in the area.
During his visit, the Defence Secretary reaffirmed the longstanding relationship between the UK and Oman by signing a new Memorandum of Understanding. The agreement will allow the countries to continue conducting exercises and training together.
The Defence Secretary is meeting with the Minister Responsible for Defence Affairs, His Excellency Sayyid Badr bin Saud bin Harub Al Busaidi and the Minister of the Royal Office, His Excellency General Sultan bin Mohammed Al Numani to strengthen the relationship and to review what more can be done to counter Daesh and other extremist groups.
Mr Fallon said, "Last week’s attacks in Brussels were a reminder that all of us, the Gulf and Europe, must stand together to defeat Daesh and its ideology."