Omani firms urged to invest in India’s textile sector
October 17, 2015 | 5:14 PM
by ELHAM POURMOHAMMADI/[email protected]

Muscat: Omani companies have been encouraged to invest in India’s textile sector, which is the second largest employer in that country, offering direct employment to around 35 million people.

Textiles are an important part of India’s exports to the Sultanate and India ‘absolutely’ welcomes Omani investments in this industry, Indra Mani Pandey, India’s ambassador to the Sultanate, told ‘Times of Oman’.

He made the comments at an exhibition entitled ‘Vastram -Splendid World of Indian Textiles’, featuring more than 30 traditional Indian textiles and a large site-specific installation in three categories of painted/printed, woven/non-woven, embroidery and embellishments.

The collection of Indian Council of Cultural Relations, put together by Shelly Jyoti, an artist, fashion designer and poet, was inaugurated at Oman Avenues Mall on Thursday as part of the 60th anniversary celebrations of India-Oman diplomatic ties. The exhibition runs until October 25.

“Recently, there was Oman-India Investment Meet and in two months’ time, we are going to organise another investors’ meet. We very much welcome Omani companies to go and invest in India, and we are ready to facilitate it,” the ambassador said.

Joint ventures

Asked about the Indian-Omani joint ventures involved in the textile industry, Pandey said that there are 1,500 joint ventures between the two countries and there must be many textile-oriented ones among them. “There is one which is being created in Salalah,” he added.

Omani investment

Mohamed Al Riyami, former assistant to His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said’s adviser at the Ministry of Information, also encouraged Omani companies to invest in the textile sector in India.

“I think Omani investors should go to India and invest but get these items into Oman and put them for sale in Oman,” he told ‘Times Business’.

Al Riyami said that the exhibition provided a ‘unique experience’ and expressed hope that an exclusive Indian textile exhibition will be held in future, where the items would be put on sale.

India-Oman diplomatic ties are 60 years old, but bilateral cultural and trade relations between the two countries have existed since 5,000 years ago, he said. Oman is going to be a big commercial centre in the Middle East, Al Riyami noted, encouraging more investment from India in various parts of the country.

Second largest employer

In a speech at the inauguration of the exhibition, the Indian ambassador said that the textile industry is the second largest employment generating sector in the country, providing direct employment to about 35 million people and indirect employment to millions more.

Textiles have been an ‘integral part’ of the development of India’s civilisation and it was the evolution of the textile industry on the river banks that formed the basis of the development of India’s society and economy, Pandey noted.


Highlighting the diversity of Indian textiles in terms of production, material and the processes involved, he said that the purpose of the exhibition is to showcase this diversity to the people of Oman and the Indian community.

“Oman is a maritime neighbour of India and people-to-people relations and exchanges for centuries have been a key enabling factor in the evolution of India’s historical ties with Oman. As the tourism between the two countries is growing, there is a growing mutual awareness of diverse cultures of India and Oman,” Pandey said.

The textile items in the exhibition had been on display in Cambodia and will be displayed in four other countries — Ethiopia, Turkey, Fiji and Nepal.

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