Long-Stay Investor Residency Programme Begins
Muscat, 29 Sep (ONA) – The Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Investment Promotion today started activating the “Investor Residency Programme” (IRP) through which foreign investors and retirees obtain the right for long stay in the Sultanate.
Applications for long-stay residency status will begin to be received electronically on 3 October via the Ministry’s Investment Services Centre.
During the ceremony, the first 22 investors from around the world were given the “Investor Residency Card” (IRC).
Qais Mohammed Al Yousef, Minister of Commerce, Industry and Investment Promotion, said that the programme aims to attract quality investments to the Sultanate and that the IRP targets economic diversification sectors.
“One of the most important factors that prompt investors to choose the Sultanate as a preferred destination is the country’s ideal location in the vicinity of flourishing international trade routes in the Middle East, East Africa and India. This is in addition to the existence of a vibrant logistics network capable of reaching out to the largest segment of consumers at competitive cost. Modern ports and other infrastructure facilities add to the factors that lure investors to the Sultanate,” said Al Yousef.
The minister told press reporters that investors selected today to get the IRC hail from different countries and have invested in the Sultanate for long durations and in different quality economic sectors. More applications will be sorted out next week, he added.
On his turn, Abdulsalam Mohammed Al Murshidi, Chairman of the Omani Investment Authority (OIA), underscored the launch of the programme, hoping that the IRP will usher in a new stage of incentives and investments. He welcomed all investors, particularly those utilizing foreign capital and considers them as ‘partners in development’. The programme will open new markets for Omani products, said Al Murshidi, adding that the OIA will always encourage partnership with the private sector—foreign, as well as Omani.
Meanwhile, Azzan Qasim Al Busaidi, Adviser at the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Investment Promotion, gave an overview of criteria and terms necessary for obtaining the IRC. He pointed out that the programme has been endorsed to facilitate the award of IRCs to investors for periods ranging from 5 to 10 years.
Al Busaidi added that an investor will have a right to own one property outside integrated tourism complexes, either for residential, commercial or industrial purposes. Residency will be granted to an investor’s family, without limiting the number of family members or age groups, for first category investors.
Charles Shaw, an investor from the United Kingdom, spoke about his experience as a foreign investor in Oman, noting that the IRP will attract investors from around the world.
Recently, the Sultanate offered various sets of incentives to investors within the context of the Foreign Capital Investment Law. Among the incentives is the fact foreign investors will be entitled to 100% ownership of their projects, without limitation to minimum volumes of capital. To facilitate entrepreneurship in the Sultanate, the Ministry’s automatic licensing service via “Invest-Easy” portal offers 1,500 economic activities.
As many as 62,896 licenses were issued through Sanad offices (using Invest-Easy) between 4 April 2021 and 27 September 2021, and more programmes and initiatives will be launched in the forthcoming stage of incentives.