x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Key government reforms in Oman

Some of the economic and social reforms that have headed off Oman's Arab spring protests.

February 27, 2011: Oman's elected Shura Council, the lower house of parliament, holds an emergency meeting to examine the demands of protesters. Sultan Qaboos shuffles his cabinet.

 

February 28, 2011: The Sultan promises 50,000 new jobs and raises stipends for unemployed Omanis and students.

 

March 1, 2011: The Sultan announces that the government is investigating the possibility of giving legislative authorities to the Council of Oman — made up of an elected and an appointed chamber. The parliament is granted this authority two weeks later.

 

March 7, 2011: A royal decree dissolves the Ministry of National Economy, which was singled out by protesters for perceived corruption and mismanagement.

 

April 9, 2011: Oman raises pensions by 100 per cent and promises computers to each pensioner family with a student in school.

 

October 15, 2011: Omanis elect members of the lower house of parliament, the Shura Council.

 

March 12, 2012: A royal order promises 40 million rials (Dh382 million) to build 250 kilometres of roads to remote villages and towns.

 

November 2012: The Shura Council meets to discuss the 2013 budget, for the first time having access to key details on areas such as government spending, returns on investment, and petroleum revenues.

 

December 22, 2012: Omanis vote to elect their first municipal councils.

 

January 1, 2013: Oman ratifies the largest budget in its history, at 12.9 billion rials (Dh123.bn), with large increases in social welfare spending.

 

February 9, 2013: Oman's Shura Council approves a 60 per cent increase in the minimum private sector wage for Omani workers. The measures also restrict to 33 per cent the share of non-Omani workers in the population.