Oman’s economy to contract by 4% in 2020

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26 December 2020

MUSCAT (WAF)- Oman’s economy will contract by approximately 4% in 2020, Dr Said bin Mohammad al-Saqri, Minister of Economy, said in an interview with Oman state TV over the weekend.

Oman’s economy was hit hard by the Coronavirus’s impact on two main sectors the country is relying on for diversification, namely tourism and logistics. And the drop in oil revenues due to lower prices and OPEC+ deal.

According to official data by the Central Bank of Oman, the country’s nominal GDP in the second half of the year fell by 13.4%.

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The Omani official said that global estimates indicate that this pandemic’s impact will continue for several years, to recover to 2019’s economic growth levels.

Al-Saqri said that the government’s incentives in the first quarter of the year to stimulate the economy and limit the impact of the pandemic on the local economy amounted to RO8 billion ($20.8 billion).

Oman’s government has ordered banks to allow rescheduling and postponing loans for some segments impacted by the shutdowns, deferring the collection of some tourism fees imposed on hotel establishments, implementing an emergency loans scheme approving lenient tax measures with submitting tax declarations and paying taxes.

A week ago, the Tax Authority announced – via a statement to Oman News Agency- the imminent expiry of tax incentives offered to the private sector. And urged taxpayers submit their declarations and disclosure accounts of the fiscal year ending 31 December 2019 and any other accounting period or fiscal year ending after this date, and to settle all due taxes payable for this tax year and before the end of this month.