Muscat, Oman: The wave of consolidation among banks in the Gulf is spreading to Oman from Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates.
Oman is often referred to as the ‘hidden jewel of Arabia’, while this is contextually used for the country’s pristine beauty, this could easily be used for the Sultanate’s economic potential. The decline in oil prices from 2014 has been a boon in disguise for Oman, as it has helped in focusing attention on alternative sources of income apart from hydrocarbons and strengthening a diversified economic base.
In late 2016, the National Programme for Enhanching Economic Diversification or Tanfeedh was launched as a core element of the ninth Five Year Plan. Tanfeedh aims to grow Oman’s non-oil activities by 4.3% annually from 2016-2020. Moreover, the Sultanate has embarked on the next phase of socio-economic development with Oman’s Vision 2040 which endeavours to chart the strategic planning roadmap for the next two decades. Oman’s Vision 2040 focusses on three themes – People and Society, Economy and Development and Governance and Institutional Performance.
The country has a number of strengths on which it can build upon. Around 30% of Oman’s population is below the age of 30 years and this can easily translate into a demographic dividend. The strategic location of the country in the Strait of Hormuz, gives it’s a vantage position in East-West trade. Oman boasts of a strong infrastructure with it’s seaports, airports and road networks being second to none. According to World Economic Forum’s ‘Global Competitiveness Report 2017-18’, Oman was ranked as having the 14th best road network in the world.
Bloomberg Businessweek Middle East is publishing a special country report on Oman in November 2018. The Special Report will look at the economic prospects of Oman and various sectors that are going to be the key enablers of its future growth.
Focus areas of the report:
In addition the special report will do a deep dive of issues like:
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