MSM30 closed the week down 1.57 per cent on account of profit-taking. Financial and Services Index closed down by 2.46 per cent and 0.53 per cent w-o-w while the Industrial Index closed up by 0.55 per cent. Shariah Index was up by 0.48 per cent during the week.
Raysut Cement announced that it has cancelled the dividend for the year 2019 on account of challenges related to COVID-19 along with an unexpected increase in gas prices which will affect its profits and cash flows in the coming period.
Al Anwar Ceramics which earlier announced to reduce the capital from by 25.729 per cent to RO 22mn from RO 29.6mn and distribute the reduced capital of RO 7.62mn to shareholders, has decided to defer the plan.
Oman and Emirates Investment Holding and The Financial Corporation board announced that they will not proceed with the merger given a lack of visibility in current circumstances globally and uncertainties about the future.
MSM announced that based upon inquiries received on excluding Al Izz Islamic Bank from Shariah and Financial Indices samples, they would like to inform that the Bank is continuing to operate according to the Shariah framework. However, since the bank listing has been transferred to Under-Monitoring Market, it is no longer illegible to be part of indices constitutions. This is because indices constituent companies should either be listed on the Regular Market or the Parallel Market. The bank has not satisfied the criteria necessary to be transferred to the Regular Market, nor to retain its position on the Parallel market and therefore has been transferred to the under-monitoring market.
NCSI reported the latest population data of Oman. As of April 2020, Oman population has dropped by 0.7 per cent to 4.632mn compared to 4.665mn at the end of December 2019. Within the population, national population during the period was higher by 0.7 per cent to 2.71mn compared to 2.69mn at the end of 2019. While the population of the expatriates dropped by 2.6 per cent to 1.92mn compared to 1.97mn at the end of 2019. At the end of April, expatriates account for 41.5 per cent of the total population while nationals account for 58.5 per cent of the total.
Small and medium enterprises in Oman continue to grow supported by government-friendly and supportive laws for the entrepreneurs in Oman. SMEs in Oman have grown from 42,698 in December 2019 to 44,083 at the end of March 2020, growth of 3.2 per cent. During 2020 so far around 1,385 new SME were started. Of the total SMES in the Sultanate, majority are located in Muscat Governorate at 34 per cent, followed by 16 per cent in Al Batinah North and 13 per cent in Ad Dakhliyah. Of the total number of SMEs, 6 per cent are of Medium size in nature while the remaining 94 per cent are Small.