Although still under construction, the Oman Convention & Exhibition Centre is targeting significant world standard congresses to host when it opens for business in late 2016.
Several site visits have been conducted with leading medical, oil and gas and scientific-related specialists to showcase the benefits of staging their congresses in a spectacular and historic setting.
Among recent visitors were the President of the Montreal-based International Society of Urology (SIU), Professor Chris Heyns and President of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons, Professor Michael Hollands.
At the invitation of His Excellency Dr Ahmed Al Saidi, Minister of Health, Professors Heyns and Hollands attended the recent Oman International Surgery and Urology Conference. They also explored potential global education and professional development opportunities including hosting their future world congress at the centre.
Professor Heyns was impressed with the organisation of the conference and professionalism of the Omani urological surgeons. He was also very encouraged by the briefing given by His Excellency the Minister of Health in a personal meeting.
“This is my second visit to Oman and I always feel so welcome. I was particularly impressed with the Government’s vision to build the new Oman Convention & Exhibition Centre project which will be a wonderful asset for the country and provide an excellent platform to host a future world congress here,” Professor Heyns said.
Professor Michael Hollands was equally upbeat about the potential for establishing stronger ties with Oman’s medical fraternity.
“This was my first visit to Oman and definitely not the last. Both the destination and the venue are eminently suitable for a major conference of the size of our annual scientific meeting,” he said.
The Omani urological and surgical consultants from the Royal Hospital and Sultan Qaboos University are equally excited by the opportunities on offer through the Centre and at the prospect of holding major international medical congresses.
Dr Salim Al Busaidy, the chairman of the local urological organising committee which is bidding for the annual congress of the Society of International Urologists is of the opinion that such a conference would provide a tremendous boost to the developments of urology and surgery in Oman.
“The broad interest generated by healthcare professionals for what would be one of the first major international medical conferences to be held at the new Centre would be significant and would help spread the scientific message and awareness throughout the community,” Dr Al Busaidy said.
Venue Manager, AEG Ogden has been appointed to market, promote and operate the new Oman Convention & Exhibition Centre.
General Manager for the Oman Convention & Exhibition Centre, Mr Trevor McCartney said it was the first time both Societies had considered holding their Congresses in the Middle East.
“Hosting these two congresses alone will attract more than 5,000 leading medical specialists which will deliver very significant social and economic benefits to the Sultanate.
“While Oman is now a serious player, these opportunities would not have been possible without the Government’s vision to develop the world-class Oman Convention & Exhibition Centre capable of hosting these types of numbers and providing the highly technical demands required for such events,” he said.
Mr McCartney said AEG Ogden would continue to work with the local community and use its global expertise to target other high profile international bodies and present a compelling business case to host their congresses at the Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre from 2016 and beyond.