#ReadersResponse: Omanis will reap the rewards of national tourism drive
February 20, 2019 | 8:26 AM
by Times News Service

Residents and citizens in Oman are looking forward to seeing Oman turn into a thriving tourism destination, after Oman Aviation Group drew up plans to attract up to 40 million passengers into the country by 2030. Catherine Sclear said, “This is a good move for an equitable tourism economy and to preserve this beautiful country. The hospitality we see here is truly Omani,” as Santhosh Kumar added, “a big salute for His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said for his brave move. The world is one family.”

Baboo Gandhi added, “This is a very good move. Our thanks to our Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said god bless him with good health for his polices,” with Omani national Shabib Al Kalbani adding, “this makes me proud of my nationality.”

French national Dorothee Bayart added, “What a lovely place Oman is for one to vacation in. There is a joy here that will make people want to visit this place. I travelled to Nakhal last Thursday and it was a truly beautiful place,” with British national Ahti Arshad adding, “I can’t say I’m missing the British weather at all. Sun, sea and sand, what more do you want?”

Shatha Al Ghafri added, “Tourists will have plenty to see in Oman. Wakan village will truly be a place that they will find spectacular. It is a small village surrounded by mountains and apricot trees. Located on the southern rim of the Ghubra Bowl, the weather is pleasant all year.”

“It’s always good to be back in Oman, even if it is only for the weekend,” added Johnny Maciag, and Iryna Fesenko said, “Oman is a lovely country. Where else in the Middle East will you find a hidden village carved into a cliff?”

The stepping up of Oman’s tourism potential is one of the plans under the Tanfeedh directives for economic diversification, intended to wean the Sultanate away from oil and gas-based sources of income, with tourism being one of the areas marked for expansion. Oman Aviation Group created more than 980 direct Omani jobs and nearly 8,000 indirect jobs, which in turn supported a further 1.3 million additional passengers and 215,000 tonnes of air cargo.

Serbian national Ana Stanic, a resident of Oman, shared in some detail her fond memories of the Sultanate, paying particular attention to wide variety of food available to foreign visitors to the country.

“I must emphasise that I am delighted with the food I ate during my stay in Oman,” she said. “I am a lover of good salads, appetisers, and seafood that was so abundant. Their traditional cuisine is famous for its numerous spices, so I brought to Belgrade a lot of herbs that I regularly use when preparing meals for people.”

“Oman has so much history,” exclaimed Jean Paul Thomin. “People don’t realise that Oman was a perennial Silk Road fixture. It is truly a splendid place,” and Spanish national Juanjo Ramos added, “Oman is definitely recommended on my list of places to visit. I will be coming to Oman soon to photograph this country.”

British author Steve Backshall also loved the country, saying, “Stunning Oman has been kind,” and Emirati national Khalid Al Saadi said, “Oman is the jewel in the south of Arabia. All my love to Oman and its great people.”

Mustafa Al Hinai, CEO of Oman Aviation Group said, “As Oman’s aviation sector developer, we create a robust value chain linking aviation, tourism and logistics across the Sultanate. Our Group is a catalyst for growth, creating efficiencies, boosting revenues and increasing trade. We work to position Oman as a strategic hub and a world-class destination amongst international travellers. Ultimately, we are tasked with furthering economic expansion and unlocking the connectivity potential within the sector including the OMR 890mn contribution to GDP and the 40mn passengers expected to flow through Oman by 2030.”

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