Muscat – The Ministry of Heritage and Tourism (MHT) has invited international companies to open a tourism representation office for the Gulf Cooperation Council countries to promote Omani tourism.
The initiative comes within the context of a comprehensive system to develop and renew marketing plans and programmes being conducted by the ministry to promote the sultanate’s tourism attractions through its offices abroad.
According to MHT, the last date for submission of bids is December 19, 2022. A year-long contract for 2023 will be signed to promote Omani tourism in the GCC countries through the office.
The ministry deemed it necessary to expand its activities in the GCC market after the number of tourists from these countries increased in 2022.
The tourism representation office will play a role in raising the awareness of GCC visitors through campaigns aimed at promoting the sultanate as a key tourism destination.
The office will also cement ties between private sector partners and their counterparts in the GCC countries. The initiative seeks to generate maximum benefits from the tourism sector.
The number of visitors to the sultanate jumped an astounding 959 per cent year on year, with 1.8mn arrivals registered till August 2022, according to National Centre for Statistics and Information (NCSI) data.
According to the latest NCSI figures, GCC citizens were among the top nationalities that visited the sultanate till August, followed by Indian, Yemeni, Pakistani and British citizens.
While 1mn people from the GCC visited Oman till August, there were 200,000 Indian, 74,000 Yemeni, 47,000 Pakistani and 33,000 British visitors.
A comparison of figures of August 2021 and August 2022 shows a remarkable growth of visitors – 14 times or 1,288 per cent. A total of 25,321 visitors came to Oman in August 2021, compared to 351,555 in 2022.
Among the nationalities that visited in August 2022, GCC guests topped the list with 245,068, followed by Asians (56,695), Europeans (12,097), Africans (4,180), Americans (3,536) and Oceanians (562).