Muscat: The Sultanate, represented by the Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank of Oman (CBO), on Monday participated in the fifth session of the Arab General Finance Forum organized via videoconferencing by the Arab Monetary Fund and the International Monetary Fund.
The Sultanate was represented at the session by Nassir bin Khamis al Jashmi, Secretary General of the Ministry of Finance, and Dr Qais bin Issa al Yahyaee, Deputy Executive President of the CBO.
The forum discussed challenges faced by Arab economies, including the impacts of oil prices slump and coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.
The forum consisted of two sessions. The first dealt with developments of macro-economy and challenges of general finance policies and their implications to the Arab region. The second session focused on requirements for enhancing social security.
Al Jashmi outlined the Sultanate’s experience in regulating social protection to needy segments amid repercussions of the current global crisis.
In a speech before the forum, Al Jashmi said that the Sultanate’s Social Security Scheme came up with a package of diversified programmes, among them one on human capital investment based on free-of-charge education, healthcare and social insurance. The scheme also covers backing from pension funds and social assistance programmes, which altogether seek to secure decent living standards for hard-hit segments of society.
Al Jashmi also spoke about the Sultanate’s efforts in fostering financial sustainability initiatives in the backdrop of Covid-19 pandemic and low oil prices. These include the Job Security Fund, a unified social security system, an initiative “to enhance the contribution of a national system of economic empowerment” and an initiative on “Governance of Social Responsibility Programs and Development of Local Communities”. –ONA