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New law to help Oman attract more investments

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Sun, 29/12/2019

 Oman’s new Foreign Investment Law is expected to bring more investors to the Sultanate, and make it more attractive for them to commit to projects in the country.

Expats in Oman as well as foreign nationals outside the Sultanate who wish to invest in the country will need to abide by the rules of the new Foreign Investment Law from Thursday, January 2 onwards. The Foreign Investment Law will come into effect from that day, according to article 5 of Royal Decree number 50/2019, which states that the ruling will be implemented six months after being published in the official gazette.

The law is aimed at creating an attractive investment environment for investors, and creating conditions that would encourage more investors to come into Oman. The law was drafted keeping in mind the competition countries face to attract investors, and for this reason, investors who choose to dedicate resources to projects in Oman will receive many incentives, privileges and guarantees that are expected to stabilise foreign investments in the country.

Ibrahim bin Said Al-Mamari, Chief Executive Officer of the Investment Services Centre of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, said, “The provisions of the new foreign capital investment law were applied on every non-Omani natural or legal person who sets up an investment project in the Sultanate, using his capital and assets for the project which is economically feasible for the country.

“It has many incentives and benefits to encourage the stability of foreign investments in the Sultanate because of its impact on economic development,” he added.

“The Foreign Capital Investment Law allows the investor to establish a company in one of the permitted activities and own the entire capital of the company. There is no limit of the capital for the companies established under this law, provided the foreign investor adheres to the timetable submitted by him to implement his project and approved in accordance with the economic feasibility study.

“It does not allow any fundamental changes in the investment project without the ministry’s approval,” added Al Mamari.

“The investment laws play an important role in attracting foreign investments. It helps in the flow of capital for establishment of companies to absorb the giant economic projects wanted by the Sultanate.

“It increases the level of efficiency of operating companies and helps in transfer of economic expertise and modern investment technologies. This leads to the diversification of the economic base and has positive impacts.”

Dr CK Anchan, the managing director of World Wide Business House, a trade advisory company in the Sultanate, said, “Oman’s new investment laws were aimed at helping the diversification of the economy, a plan the government had already set in motion.

“The Omani economy aims to be founded on a strong base, which involves diversification built on knowledge and innovation,” he said. “To do this, Oman is strengthening the forward and backward linkages between economic sectors in order to expand the production and export base, diversifying business partners, deepening investment in high value-added sectors, and enhancing the contribution of non-oil sectors to the gross domestic product. “Promoting sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment, and decent work for all are strategic objectives for all of Oman’s development plans and strategies,” Anchan added. “This has been reflected in several orientations and objectives in Oman Vision 2040. Oman is ranked today among high-level income countries and incarnates an inspiring model of focus on investment in human capital and infrastructure for the knowledge development needed to deliver socio-economic sustainability.”

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