Remittances in Oman drop as expats decrease in number

The Omanization drive is part of a government’s push to recruit more of its citizens. (File/AFP)
Updated 01 December 2018
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Remittances in Oman drop as expats decrease in number

  • The decline is seen as an effect of the country’s current Omanisation policies that prioritize more Omanis in job placements
  • Latest data showed a consistent decline in four of the country’s biggest expat communities – Indians, Bangladeshis, Pakistanis, and Tanzanians

DUBAI: Remittances in Oman have dropped this year, as numbers of expats in the country continue to decline, according to local daily Times of Oman.

Latest data showed a consistent decline in four of the country’s biggest expat communities – Indians, Bangladeshis, Pakistanis, and Tanzanians.

The National Center for Statistics and Information reported a 2.8 per cent drop in the number of Indian expats, 4.4 per cent in Bangladeshi expats, 6.9 per cent in Pakistani workers, and 8.4 per cent in Tanzanian workers. Most of the expats who left Oman held white collar jobs, according to NCSI.

The decline is seen as an effect of the country’s current Omanisation policies that prioritize more Omanis in job placements.

One official from an exchange house in Oman said the potential incomes from the white-collar workers who left the country would have contributed to the country’s remittances output.  

“There is a year-on-year fall in expat numbers, and any decrease in the expat numbers will definitely lead to a reduction in remittances. Obviously, this affects our business as well, because all of these things are directly linked,” Mustafa Sultan Exchange’s PK Subudhi said.

Subudhi said he is not expecting a huge “jump in remittances in 2019,” but remains optimistic for a gradual increase from current figures. 

The Omanization drive is part of a government’s push to recruit more of its citizens, a similar push is underway across the GCC where countries like Saudi Arabia and Kuwait have also been trying to increase the number of locals in employment.


Germany: US calling European cars a threat is ‘frightening’

Updated 16 February 2019
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Germany: US calling European cars a threat is ‘frightening’

  • ‘If these cars ... suddenly spell a threat to US national security, then that is frightening to us’

MUNICH, Germany: German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Saturday labelled as “frightening” tough US trade rhetoric planning to declare European car imports a national security threat.

“If these cars... suddenly spell a threat to US national security, then that is frightening to us,” she said.

Merkel pointed out that the biggest car plant of German luxury brand BMW was not in Bavaria but in South Carolina, from where it exports vehicles to China.

“All I can say is it would be good if we could resume proper talks with one another,” she said at the Munich Security Conference.

“Then we will find a solution.”

A US Commerce Department report has concluded that auto imports threaten national security, setting the stage for possible tariffs by the White House, two people familiar with the matter said Thursday.

The investigation, ordered by President Donald Trump in May, is “positive” with respect to the central question of whether the imports “impair” US national security, said a European auto industry source.

“It’s going to say that auto imports are a threat to national security,” said an official with another auto company.

The report, which is expected to be delivered to the White House by a Sunday deadline, has been seen as a major risk for foreign automakers.

Trump has threatened to slap 25 percent duties on European autos, especially targeting Germany, which he says has harmed the American car industry.

After receiving the report, the US president will have 90 days to decide whether to move ahead with tariffs.

Trump in July reached a trade truce with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, with the two pledging no new tariffs while the negotiations continued.

Brussels has already drawn up a list of €20 billion ($22.6 billion) in US exports for retaliatory tariffs should Washington press ahead, the commission’s Director-General for Trade Jean-Luc Demarty told the European Parliament last month.

The White House has used the national security argument — saying that undermining the American manufacturing base impairs military readiness, among other claims — to impose steep tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, drawing instant retaliation from the EU, Canada, Mexico and China.

Trading partners have sometimes reacted with outrage at the suggestion their exports posed a threat to US national security.