The MSX30 Index ended the week lower by 0.30 per cent. All indexes ended the week lower. The Financial Index closed down marginally by 0.06 per cent. Industrial and services Index ended lower by 0.55 per cent and 1.09 per cent respectively. The MSX Shariah Index closed lower by 1.61 per cent.
The State Budget continues to register a surplus as it reached RO 357 million at the end of first quarter of 2022. The surplus will be utilized for accelerating economic recovery, enhancing development spending and reducing the risks of the public debt portfolio. As of end-first quarter 2022, public revenue amounted to RO 3,025 million, up by 66.3 per cent when compared to the same quarter in 2021, according to the monthly bulletin of the Ministry of Finance. This is mainly as a result of an increase in the net oil revenue by 70.2 per cent at the end of Q1-2022 to reach RO 1,565 million compared to the same period in 2021. This is due to an increase in average oil price to 78 US Dollars per barrel and higher average oil production to 1,025 thousand barrels per day, compared to average oil price of 45 US Dollars per barrel and average oil production of 952 thousand barrels per day over the same period in 2021. By the end of the first quarter of 2022, public spending amounted to RO 2,668 million, up by 3.8 per cent when compared to the same period in 2021. At the end of Q1-2022, the budget continues to register a surplus, totaling RO 357 million as compared to a deficit of RO 751 million over the same period in 2021.
Omani banks’ credit fundamentals are recovering as pressures on the operating environment have eased and economic activity is gradually picking up amid higher oil prices, Fitch Ratings said last week. In a new report on Oman’s banking sector, Fitch Ratings said that Omani banks have been fairly resilient to the pandemic shock which caused a 3.2 per cent GDP contraction in 2020. ‘Omani banks’ performance metrics recovered substantially in 2021 and this is expected to continue in 2022, supported by higher interest rates. Capital metrics will remain reasonably sound, while pressures on Omani banks’ funding and liquidity profiles have eased. This has been underpinned by the government support measures combined with the recent rebound in oil prices,’ Fitch Ratings said. Recently, another global credit ratings agency Moody’s also revised up its outlook for the Omani banking system to ‘stable’ from ‘negative’ due to an improvement in the banks’ operating environment.
The first industrial city in Musandam Governorate has begun welcoming investors eager to capitalise on its proximity to key regional markets to ignite the growth of a manufacturing hub in this strategically important part of the Sultanate of Oman. Mahas Industrial City — the latest addition to the expanding chain of national industrial parks administered by the Public Establishment for Industrial Estates (Madayn) — is coming up in the Wilayat of Khasab. An area of around 1.44 million sq metres has been earmarked for the new facility, primarily for small and mid-scale manufacturing ventures. [Courtesy: U-Capital]