Oman focuses on improving domestic trade

Oman focuses on improving domestic trade | Courtesy of Shutterstock

Recent efforts by the Oman Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MoCI) are aimed at promoting the local production of goods, in an attempt to improve the national economy.

A Sept. 19 announcement of a study program by the agency describes its purpose: “to reduce import (sic) and boost local production.”

The ministry undertakes this effort in partnership with the Gulf Organization for Industrial Consulting.

In the study, which is titled "Domestic Resources of the Sultanate of Oman," analysts consider how to identify existing natural resources and raw materials in Oman, and how to use these raw materials for domestic production, instead of exporting them. In general, the study will look at investment opportunity in the country. It will also evaluate efforts to create trade balances and raise the standard of living for residents, providing more jobs for Oman’s citizens.

A news release on the MoCI web site describes the project this way:

“The MoCI states that the thrust is on the status of the transformative industries for which there is a list of factories, their cumulative investments and workforce and commodity composition. Besides a general analysis of the economy, the study looks at the contribution of the transformative industries to national income.

In short, this study sounds much like an ideal project to revive a national economy by keeping more production within its borders, striving for domestic controls in a very globalized world.”

Speaking to Gulf News Journal Tuesday, Kalpana Krishnadas, senior research analyst of investment research and analtyics at Aranca, explained more about what officials in Oman are doing.

“The Oman Ministry of Commerce and Industry’s detailed study and findings on the country’s industrial sector are expected to aid the government in addressing key issues or challenges faced by the various industries in the country,” Krishnadas said. “Moreover, constant efforts by MoCI and the government to increase domestic production would not only make the country more resilient to global downturn, but also present investment opportunities for other GCC countries.”

Not forgotten, Krishnadas said, are the individual citizens and families trying to make a living in Oman’s economy.

“The broad-based study would help in key economic areas, such as improving the balance of trade, raise the citizens’ standard of living … and widen the technological base,” Krishnadas said.

Krishnadas also pointed to longer-term economic effects.

“We believe such studies by MoCI will help the government identify areas of economic growth, and thereby also help in acute issues such as controlling the country’s deficit, which increased 82.6 percent year over year to OMR 3.5 billion in 1H2016, as per Oman’s National Center for Statistics and Information,” Krishnadas said.

Furthermore, MoCI details on the study cite an “analytic deductive style” used to accomplish the above goals and objectives, while also identifying any deficiencies that could be hampering efforts to ramp up domestic production of goods.

Organizations in this story

Ministry of Commerce and Industry - Oman

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