Oman government employees face cut in all benefits and privileges as country struggles with budget deficit
MUSCAT – Government employees and state agencies in Oman will face a number of cuts in their benefits, according to a circular issued by the Ministry of Finance.
Among the privileges that will be cut are bonuses, public holiday incentives, health insurance, life insurance, travel insurance and car insurance. Loans and non-performance based salary increases will also be affected.
“This decision does not affect ministries as such privileges do not exist in the ministries,” Financial Affairs Minister Darwish Al Busaidi was quoted as saying by Omani media.
The decision comes in heels of a similar move implemented for employees in semi-government agencies, and as Oman is trying to curb a big budget deficit caused by low oil prices.
Employee benefits that will also be cut include school fee allowances, mobile phone and bills, annual medical check-up for employees and families, annual ticket allowance, housemaid allowance, house rent allowance, furniture allowance and hospitalization fee allowance.
The Ministry of Finance explained in the circular that the decision comes as part of government measures to reduce spending. Government authorities and institutions have been ordered to implement the new regulations before the end of July.
Institutions affected by the decision include the Information Technology Authority, Authority for Electricity Regulation, Telecommunications Regulatory Authority, and Public Authority for Consumer Protection, in addition to The Public Authority for Investment Promotion & Export Development ITHRAA, Special Economic Zone Authority – Duqm, Public Authority For Radio and Television, and Public Authority for Craft Industries.
The other affected institutions are Public Authority for Social Insurance, Public Authority for Civil Aviation, Public Authority of Mining, and Capital Market Authority, in addition to Oman International Exhibition Center, Oman Establishment for Press publication and Advertising, Security and Safety Service L.L.C, Port Service Corporation, Civil Service Employees Pension Fund and others. ICA/Expat Media