DUBAI: Oman’s Ministry of Manpower extended its expat visa ban on some occupations for the second time in its continued Omanization push, national daily Times of Oman reported.
The visa ban was first announced at the end of January 2018 when 87 job sectors were banned from hiring non-Omani employees, before it was extended after six months.
The job sectors affected include information technology, accounting, finance, marketing, sales, administration and Human Resources, insurance, information and media, some medical and airport professions, as well as engineering and technical jobs.
However, small and medium businesses are exempted from the ban, according to the ministry.
“This decision does not apply to business owners who are registered with the Public Authority for Small and Medium Enterprise Development, or to the owners insured by the Public Authority for Social Insurance,” the MoM said.
According to Oman’s National Center for Statistics and Information, 87.7 per cent of the work force in the private sector are expats, with 250,717 of the 2,041,190 workers being Omani.
The Omanization drive is part of a government’s push to employ more of its own 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 their nationals in employment.