Oman – The new ‘Gateway of India’ to the Middle East and North African markets

Oman – The new ‘Gateway of India’ to the Middle East and North African markets

Most Indians often relate The Middle East with Dubai. Understandably so, as Dubai is a huge attraction for tourists and shoppers alike, apart from the fact that a large Indian diaspora has made it their home. A number of International and Indian businesses have also made it their regional hub. The neighboring Sultanate of Oman has sort of played a second fiddle despite a very large Indian diaspora and some of the largest and oldest businesses there being managed and owned by Indians. Not any longer!

Oman has been quietly gearing up to be the no.1 investment destination and an Export hub for International businesses. Its strategic location,  long coastline facing the Arabian sea, direct access to the emerging North and East African markets and  rapidly growing state of the art infrastructure projects with participation from some of the world’s leading names in the business make it a very attractive proposition for Indian companies. Be it the new seaports, Airport, Highways or the new proposed 500MW solar power project, there is a positive buzz in the air.

This is being driven by the Government which has matched up with a slew of incentives to any new investments. For example, The Public Establishment for Industrial Estates (PEIE) which is primarily responsible for creating new industrial estates with the most modern plug and play facilities and attracting investments into them, now allows foreign investors to own up to 100% equity in their businesses and lease lands for up to 99 years at roughly around one USD per square metre per year. Additionally, there are exemptions from import duties on machinery and raw material, Zero personal income tax and exemption from corporate income tax for 5 to 10 years. The wages too are very competitive compared to the UAE. The electricity charges are as low as 3 cents per kwh during non-peak season.

Apart from free access within the GCC, Free Trade Agreements with the US, Singapore and other countries also provide easier access to these large markets.

Politically, Oman is considered a more stable, friendlier and safer country to invest, given its non-aligned position historically. In fact, it is called upon from time to time to mediate peace and stability in the region.

If you are a business seeking to expand your footprint into the Middle East or North / East Africa and looking for a safe and commercially attractive Investment destination, you can’t ignore The Sultanate of Oman any longer.

A high profile business delegation from The Sultanate of Oman led by Senior Government officials will be visiting Bangalore and Chennai between 11 and 15 December to meet with Indian companies and industry chambers. The delegation will be highlighting various investment opportunities in Oman as well as partner with Indian companies for exports, investments and technologies.

If you are interested to know more about the delegation or attend business meetings, please register your interest with us at info@aktconsulting.co or call us on +91 44 43500338.


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