Zawawi Group

Business In Oman

Culture, custom and etiquette when
doing business in Oman

Attracting Investment Partners

Oman is the 2nd largest state in the Arabian peninsula and is ranked 66th in the World Bank's 'Ease of Doing Business' survey.

The Omani market has many strengths for potential investors including strong government investments in infrastructure, healthcare and education, no personal income tax, proximity to other Gulf markets and good connectivity by air to all major cities.

Geography

With an area of 309,500 sq. kms, Sultanate of Oman is the second largest country in the Arabian Peninsula. The Sultanate is bordered by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates on the west; the Republic of Yemen on the south; the Strait of Hormuz on the north and the Arabian Sea on the east.

Economy

Despite the significant progress in the diversification of the Sultanate's economy, it is still oil-based and will continue to be so in the foreseeable future. The Sultanate has a reputation for running a prudent economy. However, being oil-based, it is subject to the fluctuations of the world's oil market.

Population

The population of Oman is currently estimated to be 2.3 million with 1.7 million of Omani origin and the rest being expatriates. Muscat itself has a population of 400,000.

currency

The Omani Rial is divided into 1,000 Baizas.
RO 1/- = US$ 2.58. Currency notes are available in denominations of RO 50, 20, 10, 5, 1. Currency notes are also available in 100 baizas, 200 baizas, quarter and half Rial denominations.

Respected and Trusted

The Group has become one of the most respected and trusted institutions guided by our commitment to excellence and single minded dedication to achieve customer satisfaction.

Strategic Partnerships

The Group continues to build on its legacy, establishing a diverse and successful array of new companies and forming strategic partnership with reputed multinational organisations.

Continued Expansion

We are confident that the Group will continue to expand its business for which we seek new partners who share our vision and who will contribute to our continued growth and prosperity.

Official Language

The official language of the country is Arabic. English is also widely spoken and understood by the business community.

Dress

Like all the Arab countries, Arab Islamic culture dominates the style of life in the Sultanate. However, being an international market, other cultures of various countries are widely visible. Both men and women are expected to dress conservatively in public places.

Ramadan

It is a fasting month of Muslims and starts 10 days earlier each year according to the Gregorion calendar. During the day time Muslims refrain from eating, drinking and smoking. Therefore, eating, drinking and smoking in public is prohibited for all during Ramadan. Office timings are slightly changed to shorter working hours and business meetings are sometimes difficult to arrange.

Religion

The Sultanate of Oman is an Islamic country.

Local Transport

The State-owned bus company, ONTC, has the franchise to operate public services throughout the Sultanate. It also contracts out some of its fleet for short-term charters and tourism. It currently operates on some 28 routes, covering over 20 million km per year and has an annual replacement programme for its fleet with the most modern vehicles available.

Taxi services, run by the private sector, are also well developed and there is an excellent network of minibuses operating as 'service' taxis linking up the major centres of population.

Office Hours

Time in Oman is GMT + 4 Hours

Ministries and Government Establishments

Sunday to Thursday
7:30 AM - 2:30 PM

Fridays and Saturdays
Official Holidays

Private Sector

8:00 AM - 1:00 PM
4:00 PM - 7:00 PM

Many private sector companies
work non-break shift schedules

Markets

8:00 AM - 1:00 PM
4:00 PM - 9:00 PM

Except Muttrah Market
which closes at 7:30 PM

Banks

8:00 AM - 12:30 PM

Museums

8:00 AM - 1:00 PM

Except Fridays and Official Holidays

Official Holidays

Hijra New Year 1 day 1st Moharrum
Prophet's Birthday 1 day 12th Rabi-Al-Awai
Isra and Meiraj 1 day 27th Rajab
Eid Al-Fitr 4 days 1st-4th Shawal
Eid Al-Adha 3-5 days 9th-13th Al-Hijjrah
National Day 2 days 18th-19th November
Weekly Day Off 2 days Friday and Saturday

Important Numbers

Ministries

Ministry of Agriculture & Fisheries 24696300
Ministry of Awqaf and Religious Affairs 24696870
Ministry of Civil Service 24696000
Ministry of Commerce & Industry 24813500
Ministry of Education 24775209
Ministry of Finance 24738201
Ministry of Foreign Affairs 24699500
Ministry of Health 24602177
Ministry of Higher Education 24693148
Ministry of Housing, Electricity & Water 24693333
Ministry of Information 24603222
Ministry of Interior 24602244
Ministry of Justice 24697699
Ministry of Legal Affairs 24605802
Ministry of Manpower 24813757
Ministry of National Economy 24738201
Ministry of National Heritage & Culture 24602555
Ministry of Oil & Gas 24603333
Ministry of Regional Municipalities,
Environment & Water Resources
24692550
Ministry of Social Development 24602444
Ministry of Transport & Communications 24603800

Government

Administrative Judiciary 24812236
Central Bank of Oman 24702222
Commercial Court 24811210
Court of Appeal 591540
Diwan of Royal Court, The palace - Salalah 23290055
Diwan of Royal, The Palace - Muscat 24738711
General Organization for Youth Sports & Cultural Activities 24703299
Governorate of Muscat 24798100
Institute of Public Administration 24602252
Internal Security Service 24406000
Majlis A'shura 24510444
Muscat Municipality 24704800
Muscat Security Market 24812607
Office of the Minister of State and Governor of Dhofar 23296555
Oman Chamber of Commerce & Industry 24707684
Oman Establishment for press, News, Publication & Advertising 24604477
Oman Telecomunication Company (S.A.O.G) 24631000
Public Authority for Social Insurance 24813757
Public Prosecution 24694633
Royal Office 24600631
State Council 24699677
Sultan Qaboos University 24413333
The National Organization for Scouts & Guides 24592375
The Omani Centre for Investment,
Promotion & Export Development
24123447

Museums

A’Zubair House Museum Muscat 24736688
Children Museum, Al Qurum 24605368
National Museum, Ruwi 24701289
Natural History Museum, Al Khuwair 24604957
Oman French Museum, Muscat 24736613
Oman Museum, Al Qurum 24600946
Royal Army Museum, Bait Al Falaj 24312646
Salalah Museum 23294549
Sohar Fort Museum, Sohar 26844758