The Oman government is to set up a new body to manage the country’s public assets, replacing its sovereign wealth funds.
The Oman Investment Authority was announced on state TV by way of a decree issued by Sultan Haitham bin Tariq al-Said.
It will own all public assets, save for the Petroleum Development Oman company and any government stakes in international companies or institutions.
Oman currently has two sovereign wealth funds – the State General Reserve Fund and the Oman Investment Fund, which are estimated to have $14 billion dollars and $3.4 billion of assets under management respectively.
Both funds will now be incorporated into the new authority as will any employees. The board members for the Oman Investment Authority will be appointed by Sultan Haitham and the body will be supervised by the Council of Ministers.
The Institute of International Finance, a global trade group for financial institutions, has stated that Oman’s economy, weakened by the Covid-19 pandemic and low oil prices, could contract by 5.3% this year while its deficit could widen to 16.1% from 9.4% in 2019.
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