Oman set to welcome Indian prime minister

Modi to visit Oman on February 11 and address the public; more than 25,000 Indians have registered to attend the event

One of the major highlights of Modi’s visit will be a historic address at a community programme in Oman at the Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex

Muscat: Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is scheduled to visit Oman on February 11 on the invitation of Oman’s Sultan Qaboos Bin Said.

One of the major highlights of Modi’s visit will be a historic address at a community programme in Oman at the Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex.

Officials from the Embassy of India in Muscat confirmed to Gulf News that PM Modi will address the Indian community at a government-owned multi-purpose stadium in the Boshar district of Muscat on Sunday.

An overwhelming crowd of over 25,000 Indians have registered for the event.

Indian diaspora comprising of students, professionals, corporate leaders, business tycoons, homemakers, senior citizens and media officials are expected to attend the event.

The Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex, the largest of its kind in Oman, can seat approximately 34,000 people.

On his first-ever visit to Oman, Modi will hold discussions ‘on matters of mutual interest’. Raveesh Kumar, India’s Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson, earlier said that his visit would be to ‘broad-base’ India’s engagement with Palestine, UAE and Oman and focus on strategic domains encompassing defence and security, trade and investment.

India-Oman bilateral partnership has been swelling. His maiden visit to Oman will take the strategic partnership to a new high, with Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) to be signed.

Modi will address the business leaders on February 12 at the ‘India-Oman Business Meet’, organised by Ministry of Commerce and Industry of Oman, in association with Embassy of India, Muscat. This forum aims at uplifting Omani and Indian entrepreneurs to conduct successful businesses with the other.

On his arrival, the Prime Minister will be received at the Royal Airport by Sayyid Fahd Bin Mahmoud Al Said, Deputy Prime Minister for Council of Ministers of Oman, ministers and senior officials.

During his visit, Indian prime minister will meet Sultan Qaboos at Bait Al Barakah Royal Palace for a special dinner. The two leaders will review bilateral cooperation between the two countries, identify new areas of cooperation and exchange views on regional situation in South Asia and West Asia region, including Gulf region, along with global issues of mutual interest.

According to MEA, the bilateral trade and investment between India and Oman remain stout and resilient.

Bilateral trade, which saw a decline during 2014-15 and 2015-16, has resumed its upward trend with an increase of 3.6 per cent from $3.8 billion in 2015-16 to $4 billion in 2016-17, the ministry said.

Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the UAE, Qatar, Bahrain and Oman constituted 20 per cent of India’s trade.

Gulf Cooperation Council is the source of India’s 50 per cent of oil and 60 to 65 per cent of liquefied natural gas. There were reports that 90 lakh Indians reside in the Gulf and $35 billion is remitted every year, Kumar said in a media report.

Speaking to Economic Times, Oman’s Ambassador to India Hamed Saif Al Rawahi earlier said: “Oman is a dynamic partner of ‘Make in India’ mission of India. The Indian government invited Omani companies to invest in India and capitalise on the new government’s ‘Make in India’ initiative. There are more than 1,500 Indo-Omani joint ventures in Oman itself, which is valued at $7.5 billion. India has made an investment of $4.5 billion.” 


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