With the introduction of the new Foreign Capital Investment Law (FCIL), Hundred percent foreign ownership of Omani companies is now a reality. This law enabling 100 percent foreign ownership in most of the companies set up in Oman came into force in the Sultanate on January 7, 2020. However, there is an exception of a number of 37 trades and services as ‘negative list’ .They include, among other trades and activities, translation and photocopying services, laundry, tailoring, vehicle and automotive repairs, sale of drinking water, transportation, manpower and recruitment services, taxi operation, hairdressing and salon services, fishing, rehabilitation homes meant for the elderly, or disabled, and orphans etc.
Notwithstanding this negative list, a significant however moderately little segment of the Omani economy, the new law declared by Royal Decree 50/2019 (FCIL) opens up promising new areas for 100 percent remote speculation, as per sources. It includes several incentives and advantages for foreign investments so as to encourage their flow into and stability in the Sultanate. The new investment law is said to help increase the growth of local businesses by up to 75 per cent.
“The expected growth rate in the investment sector in the Sultanate will not be less than 75 per cent if the legislations are implemented properly and the appropriate investment environment is created and modern regulations are activated,” said Mohammed Al Badi, the acting director of the Legal Department at Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MOCI). He further added that “The law created many incentives to encourage foreign investors to start their investments in the Sultanate.
The law allows the establishment of a company in one of the sectors permitted within the Sultanate, with full ownership of and without determining the minimum capital, as long as the foreign investor adheres to the timetable provided for the implementation of the project and does not make any amendments to the project without ministry permission,”
It is an important point to note that, the FCIL doesn’t stipulate a minimum share capital requirement. The MoCI has also relaxed its earlier practice of necessitating any company which has one or more foreign shareholders to begin with a minimum starting share capital of RO 150,000 (almost $390,000). Also, to be noted is the fee for registering such type of a company at the Ministry is higher than before and it starts from RO 3,000 and is subject to further increase depending on the anticipated share capital of the new company.