The strategic partnership between India and Oman and highlights the importance of Oman in India's West Asia policy. It covers various aspects of the bilateral relationship, including trade, defense, security, and regional co
Sultan Haitham bin Tarik of Oman is visiting India on a state visit.
This is his first visit to India since becoming Sultan in January 2020.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Oman in February 2018, where key agreements on trade, defence, and security were made.
Oman is strategically important to India due to its location and proximity as a neighbor in the Arabian Gulf region.
Oman, along with Saudi Arabia and the UAE, is one of India's key strategic partners in the Gulf region.
The ruling family of Oman has a strong connection with India, with Sultan Qaboos being favorably disposed towards India.
India and Oman have close ties at the people-to-people level, with a large Indian community residing in Oman.
Oman has been a consistent supporter of India, even during the Cold War era when other Arab countries were supportive of Pakistan.
Oman has pursued a foreign policy of moderation and mediation, maintaining deliberate neutrality in regional conflicts.
Oman has maintained close relations with western powers and Gulf Cooperation Council countries, while also maintaining a pragmatic approach towards Iran.
Oman played a key role in diffusing tensions between the United States and Iran during the Persian Gulf crisis in 2019.
Oman played a crucial role in the Iran nuclear deal in July 2015.
Oman refused to join Saudi Arabia and other countries in breaking diplomatic ties with Qatar during the GCC-Qatar diplomatic stand-off in June 2017.
Oman's importance in the region was confirmed by a surprise visit from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in October 2018.
Oman is a crucial pillar of India's West Asia policy and the two countries have a strategic partnership based on mutual trust and shared interests.
Oman was invited by India as a guest nation during its G-20 presidency earlier this year.
Defence and security engagement is a key aspect of the strategic partnership between India and Oman.
Oman is the first Gulf country where all three wings of India's defence forces hold joint exercises.
Indian naval ships have been deployed in the Gulf of Oman for anti-piracy operations since 2012-13.
Oman allows Indian military aircraft to overfly or transit through its airspace.
Both countries have cooperated in ensuring maritime security in the Indian Ocean region.
The Indian Navy launched 'Operation Sankalp' during the Persian Gulf crisis in June 2019 to ensure the safe passage of Indian flagged ships, which often operated off the coast of Oman.
The MoU on Duqm Port is a significant development in security cooperation, providing basing facilities and logistics support to Indian naval ships in the region.
Trade and commerce are also important aspects of the India-Oman relationship.
Bilateral trade reached $12.388 billion in FY2022-23.
There are over 6,000 India-Oman joint ventures in Oman, with an estimated investment of over $7.5 billion.
India is the second largest market for Oman's crude oil exports after China.
In October 2022, India and Oman launched the Rupay debit card in Oman as part of India's initiative to promote digital public infrastructure globally.
India and Oman have signed an MoU on space cooperation during Prime Minister Modi's visit.
There is a possibility of an agreement on joint exploration of rare earth metals, which are important for modern electronic equipment.
The proposed India-Middle-East-Europe Connectivity Corridor (IMEEC) infrastructure project could see Oman playing a significant role.
There is a proposal for a 1,400 km long deep-sea pipeline from Oman to India for the transfer of gas.
India is seeking deeper engagement and collaboration in West Asia, with Oman being an important pillar.
Any instability in the region has a direct impact on the safety and security of Indians working there, India's energy security, and trade relations.
Oman is India's oldest strategic partner in the region and an integral part of important groupings in the region.
Oman's ability to manage rival ideologies and power games in the region makes it important to India.
Oman is considered India's gateway to West Asia.
The visit of Oman's Sultan is timely and important for India and the region, especially with the ongoing Israel-Hamas war.