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Bilateral Relations with Oman

German Embassy Muscat

German Embassy Muscat, © Embassy

05.12.2017 - Article

Oman and Germany

Since consular relations were established in 1967 and upgraded to diplomatic relations in 1972, Oman and Germany have developed a mutually beneficial relationship which encompasses cooperation in almost every field.

Developments in cultural ties between Oman and Germany

Academic ties between the two countries started in the 1970s with German geographical research in Oman undertaken by Professor Fred Scholz and his team, comprising development-related field research in the capital area, Musandam, al-Batinah and Dhofar. Since 1977 German archaeologists carry out surveys in Oman in close cooperation with Omani archaeologists. Research by the German Mining Museum in Bochum established Oman as the ancient Magan. Al-Balid Archaeological Park in Dhofar was proposed by German researchers, and its realization 1996-2001 co-financed by the German Federal Foreign Office. From 1999 to 2007 the universities of Kassel and Tübingen conducted an interdisciplinary project on the oasis settlements of Oman. The German-Omani Association, promoting friendship and cultural ties and organizing numerous lectures and exhibitions in both Oman and Germany, celebrates its 25th anniversary in 2017. A major step forward was the establishment of GUtech, the German University of Technology, in Halban in 2007. Almost 2000 students are taught there in 2017 on the basis of German standards provided for by RWTH Aachen, one of Germany’s foremost universities in the field of technology and engineering. Around 270 Omani students have been studying in Germany with grants from Oman’s government under a joint programme with DAAD, the German Academic Exchange Service started in 2005.

The rising numbers of tourists, from Germany to Oman as well as from Oman to Germany (including Omanis travelling for medical treatment) as well as closer cooperation in many fields have boosted the popularity of the German language in Oman. Around 1.500 people are currently enrolled in German language courses in the Sultanate. The Goethe Institute, in cooperation with Oman’s Ministry of Education, established a German Language Learning Centre in Sarooj in 2013. German is also taught in four Omani Universities as well as at five government secondary schools and a number of private schools. In May 2016, the Ministry of Tourism, the Goethe-Institut Muscat and Muriya Tourism Development signed an agreement to enhance the German language skills of Omani tour guides through intensive courses conducted by the Goethe Institute.

Cooperation with cultural institutions and artists in Oman goes back a long way. More recently, in 2014, the Goethe Institute initiated the project of a German “resident artist” with Stal Gallery in Madinat al-Sultan Qaboos. One result of this cooperation was the “Omani Songbook” produced by artist Verena Kyselka, an installation with film, photos and objects which also attracted a wide audience in Germany. Germany has cooperated in exhibitions shown in Bait al-Baranda and in Oman’s Photographic Society and is looking forward to work with Bait al-Zubair and other institutions. Germany also contributes regularly to the Muscat Film Festival – four films from Germany will feature in the 2018 festival, together with several documentaries produced in Oman by German producers. Plans for the future include a stronger cooperation with the National Mu

Economic co-operation between Oman and Germany

Economic ties between Oman and Germany were further boosted by establishing a German-Omani Joint Economic Commission in 1978 which meets every second year. Since the late 1960s many German many companies opened offices in Oman and contributed to the modernization of the sultanate. In 2009 the German Industry and Commerce Office (AHK) was established in Muscat as a permanent branch of the official Foreign Chamber Network. The Muscat office provides services to Omani business people who want to get into contact with German companies and vice versa. A bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement was signed by the two countries in 2010. This was followed by the signature under the German-Omani Double Taxation Agreement that as soon as it will come into force will facilitate successful business. Since 2011 close relations in the health sector were established that peaked in the first German-Omani Stroke Conference. Germany’s construction sector has a German Pavilion at Oman’s BIG Show fair since 2012. AHK organizes since 2014 every year a symposium on renewable energy to share long-term experiences, transfer knowledge and create awareness in Oman for this important technology.

The German Ambassador in Muscat hosts a round table for German businessmen and representatives of German companies several times a year. On the Omani side, the Omani-German Friendship Association founded in October 2012 brings together Omani companies with strong business interests in Germany.

Trade relations between Germany and Oman show a continuous increase over the last 20 years. German exports to Oman rose more than six-fold since 1990 and Omani exports to Germany grew five times over the same period. Currently, annual trade between Germany and Oman has a value of about OMR 300 Mio., whereby Germans mainly export cars, spare-parts, as well as general industrial and power-generating machinery and equipment and import plastic and chemical products from Oman. German direct investments to Oman amount to about OMR 60 Mio.

Companies from Germany are especially active in Oman's infrastructure sector. The German company Siemens supplied gas turbines for the power plants in Sohar and Barka. Other examples of German companies on the Omani market are the German-Omani joint venture Europoles that produces spun-concrete poles in Nizwa, and Bauer Nimr LLC that brought exceptional technology to Oman to clean process water from oil production. Siemens LLC Oman and GUtech implemented, in November 2017, the Siemens Mechatronic Certification Program as 1st institution in Oman. Apart from the transport and logistics sector, large cooperation potential between Oman and Germany lies in the fields of industrial development, renewable energy, health care, education and training as well as tourism.

 

Economic co-operation between Oman and Germany

Economic ties between Oman and Germany were further boosted by establishing a German-Omani Joint Economic Commission in 1978 which meets every second year. Since the late 1960s many German many companies opened offices in Oman and contributed to the modernization of the sultanate. In 2009 the German Industry and Commerce Office (AHK) was established in Muscat as a permanent branch of the official Foreign Chamber Network. The Muscat office provides services to Omani business people who want to get into contact with German companies and vice versa. A bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement was signed by the two countries in 2010. This was followed by the signature under the German-Omani Double Taxation Agreement that as soon as it will come into force will facilitate successful business. Since 2011 close relations in the health sector were established that peaked in the first German-Omani Stroke Conference. Germany’s construction sector has a German Pavilion at Oman’s BIG Show fair since 2012. AHK organizes since 2014 every year a symposium on renewable energy to share long-term experiences, transfer knowledge and create awareness in Oman for this important technology.

The German Ambassador in Muscat hosts a round table for German businessmen and representatives of German companies several times a year. On the Omani side, the Omani-German Friendship Association founded in October 2012 brings together Omani companies with strong business interests in Germany.

Trade relations between Germany and Oman show a continuous increase over the last 20 years. German exports to Oman rose more than six-fold since 1990 and Omani exports to Germany grew five times over the same period. Currently, annual trade between Germany and Oman has a value of about OMR 300 Mio., whereby Germans mainly export cars, spare-parts, as well as general industrial and power-generating machinery and equipment and import plastic and chemical products from Oman. German direct investments to Oman amount to about OMR 60 Mio.

Companies from Germany are especially active in Oman's infrastructure sector. The German company Siemens supplied gas turbines for the power plants in Sohar and Barka. Other examples of German companies on the Omani market are the German-Omani joint venture Europoles that produces spun-concrete poles in Nizwa, and Bauer Nimr LLC that brought exceptional technology to Oman to clean process water from oil production. Siemens LLC Oman and GUtech implemented, in November 2017, the Siemens Mechatronic Certification Program as 1st institution in Oman. Apart from the transport and logistics sector, large cooperation potential between Oman and Germany lies in the fields of industrial development, renewable energy, health care, education and training as well as tourism.