Oman’s Finance Ministry has asked all state-owned companies to replace foreign workers with qualified local Omanis, as part of efforts to develop the national workforce, news agency Reuters reported.
The circular issued by the Finance Ministry said that the replacement of expats with Omanis will need to be done in a “speedy and organised manner”, Times of Oman reported.
The move is part of the government’s “Omanisation” policy, which strives to improve the number and quality of jobs available for Omani citizens.
More than a third of the 4.6 million population in Oman are expatriates, including a sizeable number of Indians. There are about 7.7 lakh Indians in Oman, of which about 6.55 lakh are workers and professionals. Thousands of Indians are working as doctors, engineers, chartered accountants, teachers, lecturers, nurses, and managers, among other professionals.
The financial condition of Oman has strained on account of low oil prices and the coronavirus-induced economic slowdown.
Two weeks ago, the country had urged private firms to ask non-Omani employees to “to leave permanently”, although it barred them from trying to lessen the economic burden of the Covid-19 crisis by firing Omanis.
With inputs from Reuters and Times of Oman