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MTC and PACI Conclude “Herfati” and Announce Winners

MTC and PACI Conclude “Herfati” and Announce Winners

January 07, 2020

The Ministry of Technology and Communications (MTC) and the Public Authority for Craft Industries (PACI) celebrated the end of “Herfati” competition and announced The winners during the closing ceremony which was held yesterday, in Grand Millennium Hotel under the patronage of Dr. Salim bin Sultan Al Ruzaiqi, CEO at MTC. The competition was sponsored by Oman Oil Marketing Company for the second year and its CEO David Kalife was in attendance. This competition took place during the period from the 23rd of October 2019 until the 6th of January 2020.

The competition targeted craftsmen with Instagram accounts who are registered with the Public Authority for Craft Industries. This competition was organized with the intention of enhancing digital marketing capabilities of people in the crafts community and to encourage them to use social media. This will benefit craftsmen by giving the access and visibility to wider audience in Oman and other countries. “Herfati” witnessed the participation of 52 craftsmen. The competition garnered a lot of traction and witnessed 1462 Instagram posts from the competitors. These competitors were selling various products like textiles, pottery, palm-based products, incense, canes and other products.

The competition allocated 3,300 Omani riyals for the first 4 place winners and some several distinctive accounts. The 1st place winner is Muna Al-Shukairi who makes incense and beauty products. The 2nd place went for Asma Al-Kharusi who also works with incense and beauty products. In 3rd place came Abdullah Al-Adawi who runs a pottery business and in the 4th place came Rahma Al-Aamri who works with textiles.

On this occasion, Ahmed bin Salim Alwahibi, a Project Specialist at MTC, commented “at MTC, we believe in the power of digital marketing in all aspects; therefore, we organize a number of competitions and training programs for people working in different fields to encourage them to effectively utilize such tools to promote their products and services. Thanks to the technological advancements in social media and increased browsing speed, getting information about any product or service as well as purchasing it became now much easier from anywhere at any time thus enabling craftsmen to cross regional and international `boundaries with their products/services to get wider reach.”

“PACI and Oman Oil Marketing were keen to take an active part in partnering and supporting “Herfati” competition believing that digital marketing skills through social media will have a positive impact on promoting the handicrafts locally and internationally thus empowering craftsmen to reach a wider audience,” he added.

Head of the office of HE Aisha Al-Siyabi, Chairwoman of the Public Authority for crafts industries, Ahmed Al-Farsi said in a statement “It is our pleasure to be part of this wonderful competition that targeted the technological improvement of the crafts sector through social media. Social media nowadays has an active and direct role in allowing quick access and effective marketing locally and internationally. The competition also aimed to enhance the organizational culture within the Omani crafts industry to lead craftsmanship into a new innovative era to ensure a competitive market and an increased demand. In addition, it aims to help craftsmen enhance various marketing and promotional skills so they can achieve better productivity and profit.

“The authority harnessed all of its efforts in collaboration with the Ministry of Technology and Communications and Oman Oil Marketing Company to support the success of this competition. We are grateful to all who worked on this competition and we wish everyone all the best.”

On his behalf, David Kalife, CEO of Oman Oil Marketing said “ “Herfati” contributed to encouraging craftsmen in our society, for it challenged their skills and abilities and focused on marketing their products in light of the rapidly evolving digital development that the world witnesses today. The opportunity is now open for the winners to harness and utilize new technologies and widen the reach of their products locally and internationally. While Oman is moving towards eTransformation, it is now vital for us to support entrepreneurs, SMEs and skilled artists as part of our social responsibility and as a pillar of our national economic growth.”

It is worth mentioning that the Ministry of Technology and Communications represented by the Digital Society development Division conducted a series of training programs on using information technology and social media in marketing Omani craft products. Through its programs it trained 360 craftsmen. There are future plans to train 100 craftsmen on using design and edit program (Manipulation GIMP Image) and on photography and marketing.