Oman extends visa ban for foreign construction workers

 

Oman has extended its visa ban on construction workers and other related professions for another six months.

The sultanate’s Ministry of Manpower said the extension would begin on June 1, according to Times of Oman.

The temporary visa ban for foreign construction workers in the private sector has been in place since November 2013.

It includes a total of nine professions such as carpenters, metallurgists, blacksmiths and brick kiln workers.

Companies rates ‘excellent’ by the ministry, international firms, consultancies and companies executing government projects are exempt from the ban.

A previous decision on the matter also covered camel breeders, sales, marketing, construction and cleaning workers.

Some female professionals are also reportedly encountering difficulties obtaining visas for employment for the country in certain sectors.

Work visa fees for expats in Oman’s private sector have been increased by 50 per cent under austerity measures designed to plug the country’s budget deficit.

Government spending this year is projected to total OMR11.7bn ($30.4bn) and revenues OMR8.7bn, which would result in a deficit of OMR3bn as the country continues to feel the effects of low oil prices.

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