Muscat – The Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Water Resources (MAFWR) on Monday signed an agreement for designing and setting up a website and an app for the Electronic Management System of Omani Aflaj in cooperation with the UNESCO Chair for Aflaj Studies in the University of Nizwa.
The project is funded by the Agricultural and Fisheries Development Fund and Digital Imagination for Technology Company.
The agreement was signed by H E Ali Mohammed al Abri, Undersecretary for Water Resources in MAFWR, Abdulaziz al Rawahi, manager of the company’s business development unit, and Dr Abdullah al Ghafri from the UNESCO Chair for Aflaj Studies.
Aflaj are considered one of the major traditional irrigation systems on which Omanis have depended for ages. Aflaj types vary according to the geology and hydrology of the area. There are 4,112 aflaj across Oman.
This project comes within the framework of water sector developments in line with Oman Vision 2040. It is an innovative system designed for managing the time of irrigation by aflaj.
The website and application will allow owners of farms in Oman to know their share of water and timing in farm irrigation. The app and website will provide several other services and indicators related to aflaj.
The system aims to preserve Omani history and introduce technology to Omani aflaj by utilising Fourth Industrial Revolution technologies. It will also help the next generation in easily and conveniently identifying the time of irrigation by aflaj, in addition to preserving related information.
The project will contribute to assisting Omani and international researchers and academics in the field of aflaj.
MAFWR restored 233 aflaj in 2022 compared to 70 in 2021 – an increase of 233 per cent in a year.