Global Insider: Iran-Oman Relations

Amid high tensions in the Middle East, Omani Foreign Minister Yousef bin Alawi recently met with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in Tehran and committed to strengthening bilateral ties. The two countries also held joint military exercises in February. In an email interview, David Dunford, a U.S. ambassador to Oman from 1992-1995 who currently teaches political science at the University of Arizona, discussed Iran-Oman relations.

WPR: What is the current state of Iran-Oman trade and diplomatic relations?

David Dunford: Oman and Iran have long had diplomatic relations, and there was no break in those relations after the Iranian Revolution in 1979. When I was in Oman in the early 1990s, Oman maintained diplomatic relations with both Iraq and Iran, despite the hostility between the two. This reflects Oman's desire to maintain normal relations with all countries, especially its neighbors. Iran is only a few miles away from the northern tip of the Musandam Peninsula across the Strait of Hormuz, but despite its proximity, Iran is not currently a major trading partner. Nevertheless, since Sultan Qaboos paid an official visit to Iran in 2009, both governments have repeatedly taken steps to increase the visibility of the economic relationship. Iran opened an Iran Trading Center in Muscat, and Oman hosted an Iran trade exhibition in February and reportedly plans to open a trade center in Tehran.

Keep reading for free!

Get instant access to the rest of this article by submitting your email address below. You'll also get access to three articles of your choice each month and our free newsletter:

Or, Subscribe now to get full access.

Already a subscriber? Log in here .

What you’ll get with an All-Access subscription to World Politics Review:

A WPR subscription is like no other resource — it’s like having a personal curator and expert analyst of global affairs news. Subscribe now, and you’ll get:

  • Immediate and instant access to the full searchable library of tens of thousands of articles.
  • Daily articles with original analysis, written by leading topic experts, delivered to you every weekday.
  • Regular in-depth articles with deep dives into important issues and countries.
  • The Daily Review email, with our take on the day’s most important news, the latest WPR analysis, what’s on our radar, and more.
  • The Weekly Review email, with quick summaries of the week’s most important coverage, and what’s to come.
  • Completely ad-free reading.

And all of this is available to you when you subscribe today.