New task force to stimulate Oman’s economic recovery

MUSCAT, oct 28 – Dr Said bin Mohammed al Saqri (pictured), Minister of Economy, issued Ministerial Decree 148/2020 setting up a working group to develop policies and programmes aimed stimulating the national economy. The task force will be supervised by Dr Nasser bin Rashid al Maawali, Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Economy.
Represented on the high-powered panel are officials from Ministry of Finance, the Central Bank of Oman, the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Investment Promotion, Oman Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Tax Authority, the Tawazun Programme, State Council and Shura Council, and a number of experts, specialists and academics.
The group has been tasked with formulating economic policies and strategies that can help rekindle economic growth and business activity stifled by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The announcement comes less than a week after His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik unveiled a far-reaching fiscal strategy, dubbed the ‘Medium Term Fiscal Balance Plan (2020 — 2024), which provides a blueprint for achieving fiscal sustainability during this timeframe, notably by paring debt, prioritising spending towards strategic national objectives, conserving and boosting State reserves, and monetising government assets, among other goals. In parallel with this blueprint for achieving fiscal sustainability, the government has also pledged to spend as much as RO 371 million on an array of development projects, details of which are likely to be disclosed shortly.
Also boding well for a pick-up in economic activity is the government’s planned sale of an international bond aimed at raising $2 billion in two tranches with maturities of 7 years and 12 years. According to the Ministry of Finance, the offer has been well-received by interested investors, which attests to market confidence in the government’s actions and measures to achieve financial stability and sustainability.