Muscat: Omani citizens and expatriates have hailed His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik’s roadmap of development.
Read here: Education, jobs for youth top priorities in HM's Royal Speech
In his address to the nation on Sunday, His Majesty the Sultan laid out plans underlining the country’s progress in the years to come, with attention in particular to be given to education, job creation, economic diversification, and maintaining proper financial discipline, so that the objectives of the Oman Future Vision 2040 can be achieved.
Dr Yahya bin Mahfoudh Al Mantheri, Chairman of the State Council, praised the Royal Speech of His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik on Sunday.
The Council Chairman said that the Royal Speech underscored the role of young people as the wealth of the nation and an inexhaustible resource in national development, as well as ensuring that women enjoyed all rights guaranteed by law.
The Majlis Al Shura also praised the Royal Speech of His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik, wherein His Majesty the Sultan emphasised on the achievements of late His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said bin Taimour.
Majlis Al Shura also commended reshaping the state administrative body and update of the legislations and laws and empowerment of youth.
Meanwhile, Jassim Al Balushi, the Deputy Head of Training and Professional Development at the National University of Science and Technology’s College of Engineering, hoped that the education imparted to students in the future would also give them the confidence to succeed later in life.
Meanwhile, Fatima Al Hinai, a jobseeker from Ibri, said, “His Majesty the Sultan’s speech has given hope and optimism for a bright future for Oman and its people, as the youth seem to have gained the greatest attention in His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik’s speech, as seen in his keenness to provide better education and support scientific research, which shows his eagerness to listen to young people. Achieving the goals of the Future Vision 2040 will need contributions from both young men and women.”
Jassim Al Balushi said: “I am confident that the new plans will help everyone in the country, particularly when it comes to the plans to implement Oman Vision 2040. We are looking forward to this, because education and the needs of the job market are always changing. If, for example, a student has developed all of the right skills, then he will be able to understand his lectures properly, and he will get high marks, and he will then be an attractive choice for companies looking to hire.”
“Many of the students we get do have the right aptitude or the right ability, but there are unfortunately some students who do not have the right skills in critical subjects like English or mathematics, so we put them through our foundation courses after analysing them, and this means they need to spend five years instead of four,” he said.
“However, we hope that the new plans will provide solid foundations to students.”
While a lawyer from Saham, Mohammed Al Rushdi, added, “The speech of His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik drew a road map to complement the Blessed Renaissance march in all areas.”
Mohammed Al Rushdi said: “The Sultan’s speech touched on the modernisation of laws, and among these amendments, we look forward to the establishment of a constitutional court to complete the judicial edifice - in addition to issuing the Prime Minister’s Law. Thus, the structure of the main state powers of legislative, judicial and executive will be completed, and this is because the Sultanate has an integrated system of institutions that enables it to move forward on the path of progress, prosperity, economic prosperity, and security.”
Dr SL Gupta, the Dean of the Waljat College of Applied Sciences, highlighted five key areas across which education helped students.
“This vision of His Majesty is really appreciable, because I believe it will strengthen higher education, training and skill. These areas play a vital role in the development of the country’s economy, so education will enhance citizen’s analytical skills, firstly, and secondly, their educational level.”
“Thirdly, it will encourage focusing on research and development, fourthly, it will help in product identification and creation, which in turn will diversify the economy, and it will further help develop a long-term policy that will lead to success of the citizens in a knowledge-based economy,” he added. “All of these together will help in the development of the country, leading to human resource development and better job opportunities.”
Herve Corvest, General Manager, Crowne Plaza Muscat hotel, was keen to see how these developments would affect the tourism sector.
He said, “His Majesty’s speech and directions engaging the tourism industry were very motivational to us. Tourism in Oman has been gaining momentum over the years and it is evident with the year-on-year increase in the number of travellers arriving to the country. Major investments to expand the hotel and tourism infrastructure facilities by Oman have successfully resulted in significant growth in the number of visitors.”
In an address to the nation, Sultan Haitham said, “On top of our national priorities is the education sector, with all its types and levels.”
“It will receive full attention, and it will be provided with the supporting environment which motivates research and innovation. We will also provide it with all means of empowerment, since it is the base upon which our children will be able to participate in meeting the requirements of the coming phase of development.”
“We will also be committed to directing our financial resources in the most ideal manner which will ensure the reduction of debt and the increase of income,” added His Majesty. “We will direct the government, with all its sectors, to implement a more efficient system of management which places, on top of its priorities, financial balance, economic diversification, and the sustainability of the national economy, besides developing all relevant laws and regulations, God willing.”