Vision 2040 eyes increase in economic growth

Striving to become a developed country, the Sultanate of Oman under the leadership of His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik is building a productive and diversified economy based on the objectives set out in Oman Vision 2040.
Developed in line with the Royal Directives of late His Majesty Sultan Qaboos, the Vision 2040 is a guide and key reference for planning activities in the next two decades. And the strategy in the vision is based on inputs from Omani individuals, businesses and stakeholders representing all facets of Omani society.
At the heart of Vision 2040 are policies characterised by the Sultanate’s positive development story and excellent infrastructure that is providing stronger economic growth together with better sharing of the benefits of increased prosperity among social groups.
While foreseeing the future progress and development aligned with an ambitious work system, its blueprint, which was unveiled last year, targets a number of economic indicators including a commitment to raise Real GDP per capita by 90 per cent and Real GDP Growth by five per cent annually during the next 20 years.
It also targets to enhance contribution of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) to GDP to 10 per cent. Furthermore, it envisions the share of non-oil activities to grow to more than 90 per cent of GDP, as well as a 40 per cent contribution to job creation by the private sector.
For this, the non-oil sectors are expected to contribute to 93 per cent of GDP, by focusing its diversification strategy on shifting its economy towards five critical sectors: tourism, logistics, manufacturing, fisheries and mining, as identified in the Ninth Five-Year Development Plan.
It also aims to increase the rate of Omani nationals in the private sector to 42 per cent by 2040 and to increase foreign investment to 10 per cent of GDP.
Such comprehensive plans are critically important not just for economic growth, but also for the ambitions of millions of young people in the region.
Achieving the strategic directions and goals of Oman Vision 2040 is not the responsibility of the government alone. Citizens, private sector and civil society organisations also have a role to play.
“We are keen to ensure the participation of all segments of society and partners in formulating their priorities and aspirations,” said His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik and Head of Oman 2040 Main Committee.
During a discussion on the role of society and youth in realising the vision, His Majesty Sultan Haitham emphasised on the need for engaging students abroad to inform policy design and reinforce government’s capacity to implement them.
“I salute every young man and woman with ideas and who would like to be heard, and I invite them to put those ideas forward because when the future vision is discussed, it is the future of their children. We do not differentiate between our youth at home and abroad.” Oman Vision 2040 has garnered wide community participation. The created Vision committees consisted of representatives of the Government, the Council of Oman, the private sector, civil society organisations and citizens — experts, scholars and specialists.
Community participation was present throughout the stages of the Vision development, across the different governorates of Oman, thus embodying the consensus between the political leadership and all segments of the community to create gradual transformation across the board.
In the Vision, a favourable environment will be created to attract talents in the labour market.
This Vision lays down the foundations for an empowered knowledge-based society whose members are creative, proud of their identity and culture.
They are also committed to their civic duties and values and living in dignity and sustained well-being. It also aims at creating a society endowed with leading healthcare system having an active lifestyle.
The members of the society should also have inclusive education for lifelong learning to develop skills for the future, promote scientific research, build national capabilities and achieve economic growth and social well-being.
The vision also foresees a society with flexible yet strong agencies, all-encompassing governance, effective supervision, swift justice, efficient performance, and active and ever renewing media, aided by an empowered civil society that participates in all aspects of life, towards higher levels of human development.
Smart and sustainable cities are built with advanced IT infrastructure; and socio-economic prosperity and social justice are nurtured in urban and rural communities.
National Priorities as per the Preliminary Vision Document of the Vision 2040 include: · Development of education system at all levels and the improvements of its outputs have become necessary for building the Omani citizen, confident of identity and committed to social values.
· Health system with international standards. A comprehensive and fair healthcare system should cover all regions of the Sultanate with the participation of the government, private sector and civil society. This coverage should include more medical specialties, specialised health institutes and developed human cadre who work in the field of medical and health- care.
· Social justice is a precursor to having cohesive, strong and peaceful societies. It is attained by providing decent livelihood, sustaining high quality of social welfare services such as health and education, and the provision of social security nets to ensure a viable living for present and future generations.
· Paying attention to youth is a guarantee for the future. It should promote their involvement in the social-economic life, and provide them with ample work opportunities especially by the private sector to improve their productivity.
· A flexible labour policy will provide Omanis with required skills and adaptability so that employment becomes easy and accessible. People with disabilities should have the chance to work and improve their living conditions in a way that it ensures their integration into labour market. A flexible policy will also allow for the implementation of job replacement in some economic sectors.