Omani Minister of Manpower Sheikh Abdullah Bin Nasser Al Bakri has announced a freeze on expat hiring in ten sectors, a move designed to encourage local companies to hire more local expertise.
The sectors affected are information systems, sales, marketing, administration, human resources, insurance, media, airports, engineering and technical professions.
Expats already working in these sectors are able to keep working until their permits expire. Oman’s Council of Ministers made a statement in October 2017 announcing their intention to provide jobs for 25,000 Omanis, part of a drive for the “Omanisation” of the country. The statement also made provision for action to be taken against companies that do not cooperate with the effort. According to a report by Reuters, the move followed a demonstration by unemployed Omani workers at the Ministry of Manpower in Muscat. The most recent data available from the World Bank indicates that in 2015 more than 40% of the people working in Oman were not Omani nationals.
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