Shell Intilaaqah Oman has signed an agreement with Oman’s Ministry of Education (MOE) to conduct a series of Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) training workshops for students across the Sultanate.

The agreement signed by Mr. Chris Breeze, Shell’s Country Chairman in Oman and Dr. Nasser Salim Nasser Alghanabousi of the Ministry of Education’s National Career Guidance Centre, follows the conclusion of an SME conference held recently at the Sultan Qaboos University (SQU).

Commenting on this agreement, Chris Breeze said, “We are committed to supporting the ideas and principles represented at the SME Conference and are delighted to contribute to training and encouraging Omani school students to gain entrepreneurial skills. The earlier potential future entrepreneurs start thinking about their ideas and their markets, the more they will be empowered to take on such challenges when they emerge from school and university. This project combines our focus on fostering youth potential and on supporting the SME sector.”

In addition to the training workshops, Shell Intilaaqah Oman will also hold and organise its first “My Ideas” competition designed to encourage students undertaking the training programme to share their business ideas upon completion of their training requirements. Students will initially compete on a governorate level and the top three winners in every governorate will progress to compete for the top three winners in the Sultanate. The “My Ideas” judging panel consists of representatives from Shell Development Oman, the Ministry of Education and a third party from the SME sector in Oman.

The training workshops will be conducted for grade 10 students in all 11 governorates of the Sultanate, with the aim being to create an entrepreneurial awareness among school students and to facilitate the development of their business skills and knowledge.

The first training sessions will be conducted in Muscat for a group of career guidance supervisors who work in different regions in Oman. The sessions will prepare these supervisors to go on and impart their knowledge to students throughout the country. The training programme is will run from the 1st February 2015 to the 30th June 2016.

Over the past few years, Shell Development Oman has held multiple workshops and open discussion forums targeting decision makers, leading organisations and entrepreneurs in Oman. Examples of these programs are the Entrepreneur Partnership Forum, Bright Ideas and Women’s SME development. All of these programmes were conducted with the aim of collaborating to build a prosperous entrepreneurial foundation in Oman.