Ljubljana, 17 February (STA) - The Public Agency for Entrepreneurship and Foreign Investments (JAPTI) is sending the first official Slovenian business delegation on a visit to Oman between 17 and 20 February. Representatives of 11 Slovenian companies will take part in a business conference and hold bilateral meetings with local companies.
The delegation, consisting of business executives and representatives of JAPTI and the Foreign Ministry, aims at establishing diplomatic relations and boosting economic cooperation - not only trade, but also exchange of know-how and technologies, joint foray into third markets and investments.
The visit to the country with a strategic position on the southeast coast of the Arabian Peninsula - which will allow Slovenian businesses to access other markets of the Middle- and Far East - is organised by JAPTI and the Oman Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
According to JAPTI, a Slovenian-Omani business conference will be held in the capital, Muscat, on Saturday, followed by bilateral meetings of business representatives.
On Sunday, the delegation will visit some of Oman's companies and the industrial centres in the suburbs of Muscat.
Trade between Slovenia and Oman amounted to EUR 2.5m in 2010, when it grew 23.7% over the previous year, according to data of the Statistics Office, which indicates there is still much unexploited room for economic cooperation.
According to internet database Sloexport, 14 Slovenian companies are exporting to Oman, which took 104th place among Slovenia's foreign trade partners in 2010.
JAPTI sees opportunities for Slovenian companies in Oman especially in agriculture and fisheries, notably in development of technologies and spare parts for irrigation systems, and in production of fertilisers, vegetables, sugar and honey.
Oman is also a prospective tourist destination, offering Slovenian investors many possibilities for investments in luxury hotels and other tourist facilities. The country's tourism sector grew by 30% in 2010.
The country could also be a prospective market for the struggling Slovenian construction sector with projects like a 54-kilometre expressway in Muscat, for the petrochemicals industry, car tire production, education and health care.