DUBAI: Oman has approved a set of measures to cope with the impact of coronavirus and a sharp decline in global oil prices, including ensuring all government functionalities adhered to the prescribed 5 percent cut in their budgets.
The decision was approved by Oman’s Financial Affairs and Energy Resources Council, chaired by Darwish bin Ismaeel Al-Balushi, minister for financial affairs and deputy Chairman of the Financial Affairs and Energy Resources Council, a report from state news agency Oman News Agency reported.
“As part of its keenness to undertake precautionary measures to alleviate the negative impacts of CVID19 pandemic, the Council approved the following procedures:
“Stressing the necessity of adherence of ministries and government civil, military and security units to the prescribed budget cuts of 5% in the budgets of the respective ministries and units.
“Conducting full revision of general spending articles (allocations) with a view to achieving further cutting down of expenditure budgets.
“Revising subsidy and expenditure provisions (allocations) of the Government’s capital, operational and administrative companies, including financial regulations and human resources.”
The council also set aside funds to ensure food supply and reserves as well as to implement measures against the spread of coronavirus.
The policy body likewise boosted the lending portfolio of Al Raffd Fund increase the number of loans offered to small and medium enterprises in the Sultanate.
“The Financial Affairs and Energy Resources Council will continue to monitor and assess the impact of international economic developments on the Sultanate and it will undertake further precautionary measures to limit those impacts and to control fiscal deficit,” the policy body said.
Meanwhile, the Sultanate’s authorities on Friday raided street vendors in Muscat for violating health precautions, daily Times of Oman reported.
The vendors breached health regulations and requirements against the spread of COVID-19, the Muscat Municipality said in a statement.
Oman has reported 48 cases of the new coronavirus.