Oman is politically stable and one of the safest countries in the region from a security standpoint. Its “friend to all, enemy of none” foreign policy translates into good relations with all its neighbors. Oman lies at the crossroads of the Middle East, Africa, and Asia, with deep water ports in the Gulf of Oman and the Indian Ocean. Along with Iran, it controls access to the Strait of Hormuz, through which approximately 40 percent of the world’s exported oil and gas passes; all the navigable shipping lanes are in Omani territorial waters. Oman is committed to freedom of navigation through the Strait. Respect for free markets, property rights, and rule of law is widespread. Residents have access to good health care and schools, and easy logistical access to global markets through a modern infrastructure network. Oman is promoting its main ports in Duqm, Sohar, and Salalah as logistical hubs for international shipping. The government’s Vision 2040 development strategy aims to boost tourism, modernize agriculture, foster technology and startup ecosystems, and establish free industrial zones. Other objectives include increasing the non-oil sector’s share of total GDP to over 90 percent, relying largely on the private sector for finance and expertise, adopting public-private partnership (PPP) models, and privatizing government assets. Oman’s Public Authority for Special Economic Zones and Free Zones is actively promoting industrial opportunities at its four economic zones at the Duqm, Sohar, Salalah, and Al-Mazunah Free Zones. The Ministry of Commerce, Industry, and Investment Promotion (MOCIIP) has released a list of over 100 potential investment opportunities in Oman’s industrial sector on its Invest in Oman portal. Oman also aims to diversify its energy mix away from gas-fired power generation and increase its renewables capacity.
The government is increasingly seeking to engage the private sector in designing, building, financing, and operating public sector infrastructure and services, building on its track record with independent water and power projects. New seaport developments, school buildings, and dialysis centers are among 50 projects Oman plans for implementation under PPP.