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Oman Business News

Ithraa’s Inside Stories: Making cities attractive for talent and investment

In an increasingly globalised world, countries as well as cities have to stand out from the crowd to attract investment and talent. And while the economic fundamentals of a place are crucial to investors, quality of life, infrastructure, housing, healthcare, entrepreneurial ecosystem and the cultural scene all play an important role in promoting the Sultanate’s offer to the international business community.

Getting to grips with these issues, Ithraa’s upcoming Inside Stories, due to take place on Tuesday, April 23, at the Public Authority for Civil Aviation (PACA) Training Centre at 7.30 pm, will explore exactly what it means in today’s digital economy to bring in investment and have talent call Oman home.“For us to remain successful we have to satisfy both the economic and lifestyle criteria of people looking for an attractive destination for their investments.

The same applies to getting talent to bring their skills here. Striking this balance isn’t easy, but it’s achievable with the right approach. Indeed, in today’s highly competitive environment, quality of place attributes are key to bringing in, and retaining, both investment and talent,” remarked Ishaq al Busaidi (pictured), Ithraa’s Director General of Marketing & Media and organiser of the popular Inside Stories initiative.

Cities that have thrived in the past and attracted talent and investment are not necessarily guaranteed success in the new economy. Increasingly, that success is dependent on public-private co-operation, smart public policies and a web of partnerships and collaborations.

“In fact, for many, the question of how Oman’s cities can attract top firms is really: how to attract top talent. And how cities attract top talent is they are desirable places to live” explained Al Busaidi.

Put simply, investors are attracted to cities if there are opportunities to make money. And they assess the attractiveness of a city’s opportunities by estimating their likely return or profit, and are drawn to places that offer them the best combination of scale, risk and return. Generally, investors will cite five important characteristics they are looking for in a city: a strong economy with growth potential; excellent transport connections; access to talent; pro-growth leadership; and quality of life.

“Everyone has their own idea of what a great city looks like, but most would agree that they should be safe, accessible, energetic, interesting and affordable.
In fact, affordability is where ambitious cities, like Muscat, can really set themselves apart. Big name cities have many amenities by virtue of their age or location, but many have become incredibly expensive. Indeed, many mid-sized cities around the world aren’t merely the drivers, but the accelerators of growth. Their economies are agile and ripe for investment,” explained Sajda al Ghaithy, Ithraa’s Director of Media.
  • Ithraa
  • Oman
  • Economic Fundamentals
  • Investments
  • Cities
  • Talent
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