Omanis welcome decision to reduce expat visa fees

Oman Sunday 13/March/2022 21:42 PM
By: Times News Service
Omanis welcome decision to reduce expat visa fees
Muscat: Omanis have welcomed the directive of His Majesty Haitham bin Tariq Al Said cutting the visa fees for expats by more than 85 per cent.
It may be mentioned that the visa fees payable by expats have been reduced drastically by more than 85 per cent following an announcement by the Ministry of Labour on Sunday.
A statement issued online by the Ministry of Labour said: “His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik gives his royal directives to reduce the fees for issuing and renewing licences for the recruitment of expat workforce, in line with the application of the government services pricing guide, as of June 1, 2022, which came as follows:
1. Reducing the fees of the expat workforce by more than 89 per cent for companies committed to Omanisation rates.

2. Fees for issuing and renewing licences for the recruitment of expat commercial manpower:
A. First class from OMR 2001 to OMR 301 for two years and OMR 211 for meeting Omanisation percentage.
B. Second class from OMR 601-1001 to OMR 251 and OMR 176 in case of commitment to the Omanisation percentage.
C. Third class from OMR 301-361 to OMR 201 and OMR 141 if you meet the Omanisation percentage.)
Ahmed Al Junaibi from the Wilayat of Duqm in Al Wusta Governorate, said: “We welcome the royal directive regarding reduction in fees for expatriate workers. This has been the demand of business owners, especially those of small and medium enterprises (SMEs), so as to ensure easy availability of expatriate workers.”
He added: “We hope that the companies operating in the Sultanate will benefit from the reduction in fees for expats, and they (the companies) will continue to appoint Omanis and open up job opportunities for them as well.”
Another businessman from North Al Batinah Governorate, said “the decision to reduce fees came at the right time; we were waiting for it for long, especially in light of the economic situation in the wake of the the COVID-19 pandemic in many countries, including the Sultanate.”
He also said the companies were suffering the most as they had to pay the high visa fees at a time when they were facing closures and partial or total bans on commercial and industrial activities in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“With the cut in place, the financial situation of the institutions and companies will improve, especially if he (expat) has long experience in certain specializations in his company or institution and the employer does not wish to replace them with Omanis,” he added.
He also said: "The step will come in handy for the foreign investors as well due to the freedom it will afford them to employ whoever they think will further their best interests in terms of the future growth of their enterprise. Naturally, the step will attract greater foreign investments in the Sultanate.”