The Supervisory Committee of the Omani Promising Start-ups Programme held its first meeting under the auspices of His Highness Sayyid Bilarab bin Haitham al Said in Muscat on Thursday. The meeting aims to enhance advanced technology companies in the Sultanate of Oman.
The programme aims to strengthen companies based on innovation and advanced technology in the Sultanate of Oman.
The programme also aims to contribute to the dissemination of the culture of start-ups in educational institutions and to enhance community awareness of their importance, and comes in line with the Oman Vision 2040’s objectives of economic diversification and financial sustainability.
Halima bint Rashid al Zari, Chairperson of the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority, said that the programme seeks to empower the owners of innovative ideas, support the establishment of start-up companies in this field and link them to business, investment and financing opportunities to achieve expansion in the local and global markets. It also aims to raise the rank of the Sultanate of Oman in international indicators related to innovation, technology and ease of doing business.
Al Zari indicated that the programme includes three main themes: capacity building for start-ups, financing and investment in start-ups and the legislative environment that supports start-ups.
Al Zari added that the programme implemented by the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority came in cooperation with the Ministry of Transport, Communications and Information Technology, the Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation, the Ministry of Economy, and the Omani Group for Communications and Information Technology (Ethkaa).
The meeting was attended by representatives of government agencies and members of the programme’s supervisory committee.
Omani Promising Start-ups Programme is part of the government’s goal to advance local capabilities in innovation and creativity, and increase the competitiveness of Oman’s economy. This has led the Sultanate to significantly ramp up its efforts to support its start-up and entrepreneurship community. According to the start-up data platform, MAGNiTT, Oman’s start-up ecosystem secured 12 per cent of the total deal count for H1 2020, 11 per cent growth year-on-year.
“Oman’s start-up and entrepreneurship ecosystem has showcased significant resilience and is expanding steadily as the country pursues its vision to become an innovation hub,” said Shaikh Saif bin Hilal al Hosni, Country Manager at Microsoft Oman and Bahrain.