May 13, 2014 , 8 : 20 pm GST

Muscat: Michel Temer, Brazil’s Vice-President, chaired the opening of the two-day Oman-Brazil Economic Forum on Monday in São Paulo.

Led by Yahya bin Said Al Jabri, chairman of the Special Economic Zone Authority Duqm and organised by Ithraa in collaboration with the Omani Embassy in Brazil and the Arab-Brazilian Chamber of Commerce, the forum has been designed to introduce Oman to Latin America’s leading economy. It also aimed at attracting Brazilian investment to Oman’s logistics, agriculture, food, infrastructure, transport and pharmaceutical sectors. In addition to more than 200 public and private Brazilian company representatives, the forum was attended by Senator Ricardo Ferraco, Chairman of the Senate Committee External Relations and National Defence, Ibrahim Al Zaben, the Palestinian Ambassador to Brazil, Hadi Vianna, Undersecretary of Cooperation for Culture and Trade Promotion at the Brazilian External Relations, Gustavo Saboia, Undersecretary of the Brazilian Ministry of Development for Industry and Foreign Trade, and Marcelo Sallum, President of Arab-Brazilian Chamber of Commerce

The first day of the forum had presentations from Oman’s Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, Special Economic Zone Authority Duqm, Port of Duqm, Sohar Free Zone, Salalah Free Zone, Oman Oil Company and Oman Drydock Company, highlighting Oman’s infrastructure and attractive investment climate.

Michel Temer, remarked, “The Oman-Brazil Economic Forum is a direct result of my state-visit to the Sultanate of Oman last year during which investment and commercial opportunities between Oman and Brazil were extensively discussed.”

“Oman is considered a gateway through which Brazilian companies and products can enter markets in the Middle East and North Africa, as has been proven by Vale’s investment in Oman.,” he added.

Brazilian businesses were keen to find out what the Sultanate can offer to help them reach new markets.

Representatives from Sezad, Port of Duqm, Port of Sohar and Salalah Free Zone pitched Oman as a regional distribution centre and presented on how integrated Omani ports and industrial zones can be configured to meet the needs of Brazilian firms.

Al Jabri remarked, “Brazil is home to some of the world’s leading maritime transport and logistics services companies and the two nations enjoy strong economic relations that we aim to further develop. From this stand point, we introduced Brazilian businessmen to the Sultanate’s fertile investment climate, especially Duqm, highlighting how it can be utilized as a re-export hub to the Mena region.”

Dr Khalid bin Said Al Jardani, Oman’s Ambassador to Brazil said, “The forum attracted Brazil’s business community as well as heads of organisations working in the food and fish farming sectors. Given that Brazil is one of the biggest players in food processing and logistics, we look to this Forum to create new avenues of collaboration that will enrich both nations.”