With 50 per cent share, China top importer of Omani goods

Business Sunday 10/July/2016 21:39 PM
By: Times News Service
With 50 per cent share, China top importer of Omani goods

Muscat: China purchases 50 per cent of Omani exports every year, according to the Foreign Trade Statistics Report 2015.
Specifically, exports to China in 2015 stood at OMR5304,689,889, accounting for 49.12 per cent of total Omani exports.
China is followed by South Korea, with exports valued at OMR1014,320,504, UAE –OMR626,230,399, Taiwan –OMR612001218, Japan– OMR559,134,634 and India OMR399,638,116.
The country with the lowest level of exports from Oman was Slovakia, at OMR1 of export goods, while Finland imported OMR194 of goods and Rwanda received OMR300 in goods from Oman.
Businessmen say exports to China are very important to Oman.
“They are ready to buy almost everything,” a businessman said, adding that oil, methanol, paraxylene and polypropylene are the major Omani exports to China.
In return, the most important commodities imported from China include steel piping, cell phones and spare parts for excavation equipment.
Heavy Chinese investments
Meanwhile,China has also begun heavily investing in Oman in several sectors, including oil and petrochemicals, and has spent money to train Omani engineers and upgrade the efficiency of petroleum extraction.
Recently, a land lease agreement was signed between Oman and China to establish a major industrial park in Duqm, which will attract a series of mega investments that include an oil refinery with a capacity of some 230,000 barrels per day.
The proposed industrial park in Duqm is expected to attract as much as $10 billion in investments by 2022.
The rise in business between the two countries is one of the reasons that the national carrier of Oman, Oman Air, is introducing its first route to China, to begin in November 2016, serving the southern city of Guangzhou.
“The dates have not been fixed, but we will be flying to China beginning in November 2016,” said an official of Oman Air.
Further, other airlines are experiencing significant traffic from Muscat to several cities in China. “We are also having a good number of people travelling to China on our flights via Colombo,” said a senior official of Mihin Lanka in Muscat.
Recently, Emirates also expanded its services to mainland China with four weekly flights to Yinchuan and Zhengzhou,offering Boeing 777-200LR air service.
Khalid Al Jashmi, acting general manager of the Export Credit Guarantee Agency of Oman (ECGAO), said the company is focusing on data and research to strengthen its marketing strategy, since there are many gaps in the market.
“ECGA is taking a new direction in defining the path of marketing, and by not being just a service provider, but by creatinga partnership with its customers,” he said.