Muscat - Trade between Oman and India is expected to cross $5 billion in the coming years as both countries make efforts to push bilateral relations forward.

According to Redha bin Juma Al Saleh, Chairman of the Oman Chamber of Commerce and Industry (OCCI), direct interactions between Omani business owners and their Indian counterparts are crucial to forging valuable partnerships that will help both sides understand the needs of each other.

Al Saleh is part of a business delegation travelling to India along with Qais Al Yousef, Minister of Commerce, Industry and Investment Promotion, as well as a number of business owners and other key figures involved with trade and economy.

“I call on the two sides to make strong efforts to develop our bilateral trade, as we hope that the volume of trade exchange will exceed $5 billion during the coming years, in view of various attractions that the two countries enjoy and the remarkable geographical location that provides great ways to enhance trade and investment relations,” said Al Saleh, during a meeting with his Indian counterparts.

“I urge businesses in India to take advantage of the investment opportunities and advantages that are offered by Oman, as our country allows 100 percent foreign direct investment,” he added.

While in India, Minister Qais Al Yousef attended the 10th Oman – India Joint Commission Meeting on Wednesday, holding discussions with Piyush Goyal, India’s Minister of Commerce and Industry and Raj Kumar Singh, Minister of Power and New and Renewable Energy.

With the goal of forging a new business agenda to help drive growth for both Oman and India, the highly productive meeting took place on the second day of a five-day trade and investment mission to India, one of the world’s fastest growing economies and a country with which Oman has historic cultural and commercial ties.

Indian investment in Oman, which topped $7.5 billion in 2022, was one of the key topics discussed by participants with Minister Al Yousef emphasising the great interest expressed in the success of the Invest Easy portal of Oman’s Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Investment Promotion (MOCIIP). Noting his satisfaction with the outcomes on Wednesday’s 10th Oman – India Joint Commission Meeting, Al Yousef said, “Today’s session underlined the fact that this is a partnership that can boost exports and investment as well as deliver growth, jobs and opportunities for our people.”

He added: “Under the wise guidance of His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik and with the ambitious framework provided by Oman Vision 2040, I see enormous possibilities for what our two countries can achieve together in areas like renewable energy and pharmaceuticals to new partnerships in small business development and manufacturing – areas where Oman and India have common interest and expertise.”

Commenting on Oman’s $1.2 billion non-oil exports to India in 2021, a jump of 172 percent over the previous year, Al Yousef said, “This is a remarkable achievement given the serious disruptions we have seen to business during the pandemic and is testament to the hard work and dedication of manufacturers in the length and breadth of Oman.”

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