Opal chief proposes safety net plan for redeployed Omanis

Energy Monday 23/October/2017 21:40 PM
By: Times News Service
Opal chief proposes safety net plan for redeployed Omanis

Muscat: Oman’s Society for Petroleum Services (Opal) has recommended a safety net for employees, who have been made redundant to give them a buffer zone of six months in benefit payments.
“There is a committee that is working on unemployment benefits at the moment, together with the Public Authority for Social Insurances (PASI). It should give the employee a buffer, a monthly pay for not more than six months and during that period they should find themselves jobs,” said Musallam Al Mandhary, chief executive officer of Opal.
“We have been busy working with the government to redeploy people affected by the economic downturn. We have managed to redeploy over 5,000 people,” he said.
Currently, in Oman there is no workman’s compensation scheme and the government is working towards getting a system in place. “They’re working very hard to create a workman’s compensation package, as well as unemployment benefits, at least until they can find themselves jobs. It is the lack of this that has led us to put together a redeployment strategy, which covers compensation for people who couldn’t find jobs. We have had to compensate about 500 such people,” Al Mandhary revealed.
Opal had presented a Redundancy Law strategy to the government in order to provide both job and social security to employees in Oman.
“The redundancy law, the one we have presented to the government for the oil and gas industry, is to compensate people, who have been made redundant, for whatever reason. At the moment, there is no redundancy in the Oman labour law so we recommended the introduction of this law as a package that could help people until they can find a job,” he explained.
Al Mandhary has been pushing for “Unemployment Benefits” and a “Redundancy Law” for those employees who have been dismissed from services due to the economic downturn, cost-cutting, or even the new technological innovations that have replaced manpower.
“Redundancy coupled with the workman’s monthly pay would help towards creating a buffer for employees.”
He added, “At the moment, there is nothing. The labour law basically says you can give a notice of one month to the staff and that’s it. There is no security whatsoever. These recommendations were made for the Omanis, but I can see it getting applied across the industry.”