Oman invests big in overseas markets

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Muscat Sultan's Palace
Muscat Sultan’s Palace. New official statistics show that compared to 2010, the Sultanate of Oman increased its foreign investments by about 36.5 percent at the end of 2011. Photo: Serder

New official statistics show that compared to 2010, the Sultanate of Oman increased its foreign investments by about 36.5 percent at the end of 2011.

Released by the National Centre for Information and Statistics (NCSI), the figures show an Omani investment of OMR5.48 billion in foreign markets by the end of 2011. These investments were made by both Omani companies, as well as resident companies. Direct investment and portfolio investment were recorded at 33.9 percent and 22 percent, respectively.

The Sultanate has also benefited from increased foreign interest in its markets. Over the last few years, both direct and indirect investments by Oman in foreign markets has continued to increase as a result of favorable government policies, legislation, and economic incentives to promote the best global standards and practices. In the coming years, Oman is counting on foreign investment to implement various economic diversification programs to achieve its Vision for Oman’s Economy : 2020 : [download PDF here].

According to the report; “Omani direct investment abroad increased by 34.8 per cent in 2011 compared to 2010. This increase was due to the significant increase in the growth of investment in oil and gas exploration by 16.4 per cent and real estate (renting and business activities sector) by 17 per cent and the financial intermediation sector by 1.7 per cent in 2011 compared to 2010.”

In 2011, a 10.4 percent increase in foreign direct investment (FDI) was registered in Oman. Out of the total foreign investment in 2011, FDI accounted for 49.7 percent, while other foreign investment (OFI) in the form of trade credit, loans and project finance, represented 46.5 percent of the pie.

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) led all other destinations for Omani direct investments abroad, with Oman investing about 20.5 percent of the total in this market. During 2011, the Omani direct investment in UAE grew at an impressive pace of 12.8 percent compared to 2010.  India (7.2 percent) and Pakistan (5.6 percent) trailed the UAE.

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