MUSCAT, Oman, June 12, 2017 —
Maj. Gen. Flem B. Walker Jr., the commanding general of the 1st Sustainment Command (Theater) (TSC), met with Mohammed bin Nasser Al Rasbi, the Secretary General (SECGEN) of the Ministry of Defense for Oman, in Muscat, Oman, on June 7, 2017.
The visit to Oman was Walker's first key leader engagement as the 1st TSC commander. The future of the logistical relationship between the U.S. and Oman was the main topic of discussion. This first meeting was an opportunity for the two leaders to continue to enhance the already strong relationship between the two countries.
Walker expressed his appreciation with the SECGEN on meeting with him, and emphasized the value of the U.S.-Oman relationship.
Both leaders acknowledged that the U.S. and Oman share a strong professional relationship through their joint military education and training programs. The two countries have a longstanding partnership on a number of issues, including collaboration on counterterrorism, increasing economic diversification in Oman, and in creating major development opportunities.
Geographically, Oman is strategically located on a key naval chokepoint, through which 30% of the world’s exported oil shipments passes.
Oman also has access to land, air, and water movement for sustainment operations. The two leaders also discussed the creation of a new transportation hub for the U.S. in the Port of Duqm.
“Duqm is a great hub for logistics,” said Walker. “There’s capability for expansion here.”
Walker commented that he was glad to hear from the SECGEN that force protection is a major concern for the Omani government, and noted that he shares that concern.
“The 1st TSC is our main asset for building safe and stable logistics in Oman,” said Col. Eric Larson, a Senior Defense Official, and Defense Attaché for the U.S. Embassy to Oman.
Larson clarified that they are moving away from a paper/memo process to an all-electronic process. The transition will expedite movement times immensely, and create a better relationship with the Ministry of Defense for Oman.
“It is a unique opportunity for sustainment capabilities in this part of the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility.”