Muscat: A high profile delegation from the Republic of Seychelles expressed keen interest to expand its trade, commercial and investment relations with Oman, which may generate a significant growth for both countries.
This was stated by Pierre Laporte, Minister of Finance, Trade and Investment in the Republic of Seychelles, during his visit to the Public Establishment for Industrial Estates (PEIE) yesterday within the framework of his current visit to the Sultanate.
The delegation was received by Hilal bin Hamad Al Hasani, CEO of the Public Establishment for Industrial Estates, and senior officials from PEIE.
The two sides discussed aspects of cooperation between the Sultanate and the Republic of Seychelles in boosting trade and investment exchange.
Hilal bin Hamad Al Hasani briefed the minister on the history of the Public Establishment for Industrial Estates, its vision, mission, main services, academic system, and highlighted the various industrial estates that fall under the umbrella of PEIE throughout the Sultanate in addition to Knowledge Oasis Muscat and Al Mazunah Free Zone.
Laporte said the significance of strengthening bilateral relations between Oman and the Republic of Seychelles in several fields.
"Both countries have to look into ways to reinforce mutual economic and trade relations," he noted, adding: "The Republic of Seychelles is a small island state in the western Indian Ocean, and our two major industries in the Seychelles are fishing and tourism," he further added.
Addressing the Seychelles delegation, Dr. Abdullah Al Zakwani, Industrial Innovation Centre (IIC) executive director, briefed on the aims of the centre, which endeavours to develop sustainable models for creating an innovative culture within the industrial sector of the country.
"The main objective of the centre, which is a joint venture between The Research Council (TRC) and PEIE, is to build a knowledge-rich culture within the industrial sector in Oman through highlighting mutual benefits of collaboration with the research community including universities, labs, institutes, and science centres. This is being achieved by activating connections between industrial and academic communities, which eventually develops Oman's industry through Research and Development (R&D)," Al Zakwani pointed out.
The delegates were also introduced to the objectives of The Knowledge Mine (TKM), which was initiated in 2004 to support Omani youth and emerging companies to invest in information and communication technology, support start-up residents through guidance and experienced advice, and qualify a new generation of Omani entrepreneurs. Mohamed Al Hinai, Director of TKM, underscored the objectives of TKM in motivating, encouraging and embracing innovative small business ideas of Omani youth.
"Due to the significant success triggered by TKM, the National Business Centre (NBC) was initiated to further spread the culture of business incubation in Oman," said Al Hinai.
The centre seeks to facilitate and support the growth of investable ideas into successful businesses; build entrepreneurial skills through dedicated and focused training, coaching and mentoring; and provide business support facilities from office space, administrative support, financial support and consultancy services that are crucial in ensuring the success and survival of new ventures.
The delegation also visited Graphix and Golden Eagle Eye (GEE) Companies, which are based in TKM.
Laporte applauded the quality of efforts and initiatives undertaken by PEIE and expressed his admiration for the friendly investment environment which are offered by PEIE.