Jobs to be aplenty for professionals

By Samuel Kutty — MUSCAT: MARCH 18 – The outlook for professional job market in Oman looks robust this year as most businesses are expanding their teams to comply with the rising needs. The largest number of jobs is expected to be in sectors like financial services, health, tourism, aviation, manufacturing and construction. The implementation of the new corporate income tax law and imminent introduction of VAT are expected to be the biggest drivers for employment creation in the year ahead.
“There will be an uptick in demand for compliance professionals with tax, asset management and information technology experience as result of the new tax regime,” said Hamid Hamirani, Senior Economist at the Ministry of Finance.
Introduction of VAT shall certainly provide opportunities for accounting and IT companies to assist businesses get ready for the introduction of the VAT, he said.
“Businesses will have to make sure that introduction of VAT does not encroach upon productivity, it is here IT solutions will be very useful,” Hamid said.
Many accounting firms are currently expanding their teams as they look to assist or prepare balance sheets for many small and big companies.
Davis Kallukaran, Managing partner of Crowe Horwath Oman, pointed that besides generating additional revenues, the changes in tax law will also create hundreds of jobs in accounting, finance and tax within the government and private sectors.
“More jobs for professionals in the digital space can also be expected. In particular, there will be high demand for applicants on the more creative side of information technology,” he said.
New university graduates can be absorbed in these positions after providing necessary training in accounting and taxation, he said.
“For the successful implementation of a tax mechanism, more professionals and support staff should be appointed in the tax administration,” said Jose Chacko, a Muscat-based financial expert.
Also, professionals involved in such services will get more consultation jobs in preparing and filing the returns.
VAT requires each firm to be equipped to collect tax for their commodities and services also to get back the refund due.
“On the negative part, increased taxes will be an additional challenge to the business community and many noncompetitive businesses have to close down. This will cause lost jobs and unemployment,” Jose said.
Experts also point out that while attrition rates in many companies have reduced, on the other hand, they have started giving salary increases as conditions are improving for many businesses.