India

Oman best suited to be transport hub between India and Europe: senior diplomat

An agreement on maritime transport was signed between India and Oman, in Muscat on December 24, 2019. Photo courtesy: Twitter/@Indemb_Muscat

An agreement on maritime transport was signed between India and Oman, in Muscat on December 24, 2019. Photo courtesy: Twitter/@Indemb_Muscat

Oman is ready to be a connecting hub between India and the European continent, a senior Omani diplomatic source has said here. The diplomat assured fast connectivity from Oman to Europe through the Arab and Turkish territories.

“The maritime travel from India to Oman can be covered in three days and the overland transport from Oman to eastern Europe can take place in 100 hours ensuring the fastest possible delivery of goods from India to the European markets,” said the diplomat ensuring that Omani’s leaders favour a stable and peaceful GCC region that would help India attain its economic goals. He argued that other overland corridor options are not viable for India.

The assertion is timely as Oman is hosting External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar. On Tuesday, Mr. Jaishankar met his Omani counterpart when both sides signed a maritime transport agreement that will further firm up India’s presence on the other side of the Arabian Sea. Following his meeting with Foreign Minister Yusuf Bin Alawi Bin Abdullah, Dr. Jaishankar said, “A very warm meeting with Foreign Minister Alawi. India and Oman — trusted partners in an evolving world. Taking forward our strategic partnership.”

Dr Jaishankar also met Defence Minister of Oman Bader Bin Saud Bin Harib Al Busaidi and expressed the Indian desire to deepen "defence, security and maritime ties".

The Omani diplomat said there is an urgent need to build on the relationship and his country has remained politically stable and economically viable despite the conflicts that continued to rage in the vicinity and the high-tension rivalry among major Gulf powers.

Oman, he said, is also seeking Indian investment. Oman’s interest is part of a trend in the Arab world which is now seeking investment from major economies of the world. In recent months, Saudi Arabia has also indicated willingness for attracting Indian investments.

He said there is space for India to play a more active role in the region to diffuse conflicts especially in Yemen which has raged on despite frequent signs of ceasefire. “We have helped many Yemeni victims of the war in the recent past to get treatment in India. The war in Yemen casts a shadow on us and an early solution will be good for all sides,” he said.


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Printable version | Aug 6, 2022 6:03:20 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/oman-best-suited-to-be-transport-hub-between-india-and-europe-senior-diplomat/article30388882.ece