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Oman Spending Billions on Salaries

Oman : 19 April 2011

The wages of civil servants will go up with Oman’s plans to invest $2.6 billion into job creation and state assistance, as recently reported by the Associated Press.

Two months of scattered protests and demonstrations over job creation in Oman and better representation within government hopefully come to an end with this announcement.

Sultan Qaboos, the ruler of Oman, made the promise this past weekend to increase the benefits and salaries of 120,000 pensioners and civil workers, based on information in a report by Times of Oman.

Oman’s ruler conceded to protestor demands this past March and increased government employee living allowances by $260 or 100 Omani rials. The Sultan also boosted civil servant pensions by 50 percent.

A Muscat retiree spoke to the print media and stated that his pension rose 40 percent, an increase of 154 rials. Due to the increase ordered by the royal grant, Ahmed Al Jahdhami’s pension went from 512 rials to 666 rials.

Both civil workers and Omani pensioners have been going through difficult times making ends meet as massive inflation pushes the price of food higher.

The prices for basic dietary items have been steadily rising and hitting the pocketbooks of Omanis hard. Government employee Aflah Al Saidi stated that with these increases they can now purchase food without as much worry over money.

As protests spark up across the nation the public sector appears to be benefitting with concessions to their stated demands. When the private sector raises comparable demands they are answered with intimidation tactics.

An attendant at an Omani filling station, Khamis Al Amri, noted that the majority of the protestors have in fact been out of work or employed in the private sector. Those who are benefitting from the demonstrations were not even participating, for the most part.

Paul Holdsworth, Staff Writer, Gulf Jobs Market News
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