Ramadan is good for business in Oman

Home & Away Saturday 10/June/2017 22:32 PM
By: Times News Service
Ramadan is good for business in Oman

Muscat: Oman will receive a financial shot in the arm during Ramadan as it’s the month of the year when most money is spent.
The holy month is the one month of the year where traders know they can make money as people prepare for the Eid holidays.
And with the economic downturn, it has come as a huge relief to traders and shoppers alike, as residents can snap up a bargain and save themselves a fortune.
“Ramadan is a very important month for making profits,” Fabio Scacciavillani, chief economist at the Oman Investment Fund, said.
“The consumption pattern is always on the higher side as it is the catalyst for all major purchases, similar to Christmas in the west,” he said.
“The retailers have done well to accommodate the spike in demand or even accelerate demand with some amazing offers on cars, groceries, travel and restaurants with all the Iftar offers. They capitalise well during these months.”
“This year, sales may be higher as Ramadan is at the same time when people leave for a vacation, a period when consumers spend more as they travel. Also, first quarter results posted by companies have been very inspiring and I see more sales during this Ramadan as the economy seems to be improving,” Alkesh Joshi, director of Tax at EY said.
The encouraging buying trend in the retail sector during the month is expected to cascade through to different industries as consumer appetite for spending is fed by financial institutions, boosting the economy on all fronts.
“Banks and financing companies are always looking forward to Ramadan. This is a very important month of business for us and many others. A significant number of high cost transactions are made during Ramadan, from cars to houses. Most people are looking at this time either for spiritual or economic reasons,” a senior banker at a leading bank in Oman said.
According to automotive dealerships in the country, the sector witnessed a big drop in sales in recent years, especially 2017, but Ramadan is a cheerful time for car dealers as sales increase independent of economic conditions.
“We certainly see a big rise in sales when compared with other months. Ramadan sales are nearly always 20 to 30 per cent higher than other months, even with troubles in the economy,” Suresh Nair, general manager, Towell Auto said.
“There have been challenging situations for businesses in the past couple of years and Ramadan has literally rescued us from making losses. People buy more during Ramadan, whether there is a lot of income or not,” another official from an automotive dealership said.
With both spiritual and economic benefits, residents in the Sultanate wait until Ramadan to reap excellent offers and make high expenditure purchases, including cars, gifts, clothes, travel bookings.
“I don’t see a better time to buy things other than Ramadan. It gives me happiness that I bought things in the holy month, which eases the pressure on my pockets. I have waited for nearly eight months to buy myself a new car and I cannot be happier about my decision as I have got the best offer,” Mohammed Al Balushi, a Muscat resident, who bought his car on the first day of Ramadan, said.