The sessions brought five of Oman’s leading companies face to face with 44 potential importers from India’s agricultural, mechanical, construction, furniture and food industries. “Oman’s export development strategy is built on understanding our national products and their competitive advantage, which in turn helps us identify international markets and potential points of entry,” said Nasima al Balushi, director general of export development at PAIPED. Nasima added, “India’s the second top destination for Oman’s non-oil products. In fact, our exports to India almost doubled in 2011, from US$764mn in 2010 to US$1.12bn.
There is significant interest for our products in India’s booming economy. The sultanate’s current non-oil exports to India mainly comprise agricultural products, raw materials, heavy machinery and automobile parts.” Last week’s matchmaking sessions helped strengthen bilateral trade relations between Oman and India and provided a key opportunity to increase Omani exports. PAIPED is currently organising a follow-up visit for Indian importers to Oman.
“This will give my team an outstanding opportunity to introduce Indian importers to a much broader range of Oman-made products,” added Nasima. Several contracts were signed during the meetings including one worth US$150,000 with a local food products company, plus a two-year agreement to supply the Indian market with high-end furniture. The matchmaking sessions also looked to boost trade in gems and jewellery, as well as in construction, mining equipment, plastics and packaging.
PAIPED, in co-ordination with government organisations, regularly conducts in-depth assessments of Omani products and their potential to penetrate international markets. Indeed, in its role as a trade facilitator, PAIPED has organised many international business matchmaking sessions that have resulted in significant financial returns for the sultanate’s business community.