The total foreign investments in the Sultanate reached RO 19.96 billion by the end of 2018, up by 12.1%, compared to RO 17.80 billion in 2017, according to a latest data issued by the National Centre for Statistics and Information (NCSI).
The latest data show that the foreign direct investment in the Sultanate at the end of 2018 represented 63.6% of the total foreign investment, while the other foreign investments, which include commercial credits, loans and deposits, represented 32.6% of the total foreign investments.
The foreign investments in the Sultanate's portfolios accounted for 3.7% of the total foreign investments and only 0.1% of financial derivatives. The total foreign investment inflows in 2018 reached RO 2.16 billion compared to RO 2.38 billion in 2017.
The data point out that the oil and gas sector recorded 48.8% of the total foreign investments in the Sultanate in 2018, reaching RO 9,736.6 million compared to RO 7,159 million in 2017 and RO 5,267.2 million in 2016.
The financial brokerage and intermediation sector in Oman ranked second, recording 25.1% of the total foreign investments in 2018, followed by the manufacturing industries sector with 14.1% and the transport, storage and communications sector with 3.9% of the total foreign investments.
The value of foreign direct investment in 2018, which reflects a long-term relationship and a permanent interest in an entity that relate to another economy rather than the investor's economy, reached RO 12.69 billion, up by 19%, compared to RO 10.66 billion in 2017.
The data also show that the oil and gas extraction sector represented 67.3% of the total foreign direct investment in 2018, reaching RO 8.54 billion, followed by the financial intermediation and manufacturing industries sectors, by 11.4% and 9.1%, respectively, of the total direct foreign investment.
According to the same data of NCSI, nine countries contributed to 86.9% of the total foreign direct investment in the Sultanate in 2018, with the United Kingdom ranking first with total investments reaching RO 6.62 billion, followed by the United States of America with RO 1.55 billion, the United Arab Emirates with RO 1.03 billion. The total direct investments of the State of Kuwait reached RO 387,100 million; the investments of the Kingdom of Bahrain reached RO 362,600 million; and that of the State of Qatar reached RO 327,500 million.
According to the data, the income paid by foreign investment enterprises in 2018, including profits, proceeds from reinvestment and interest, reached RO 1.13 billion, recording an increase of 11.9%, compared to RO 1,02 billion in 2017.
The amount of interest paid to direct investors increased from RO 735,100 million in 2017 to RO 817,300 million in 2018, while the value of reinvested proceeds increased by 16.8% and income paid to other investment also increased by 56.7 % in 2018 to reach RO 192,800 million.
The size of labor force in foreign direct investment enterprises in 2018 decreased by 4.6%, compared to 2017, as the total number of labor force in foreign investment enterprises reached 253,950 laborers. Out of this, 91,184 laborers are Omanis, while the number of non-Omanis reached 162,766. This decrease was attributed to the decrease in the number of manpower in the construction sector by 11.6%.
Total wages and salaries in foreign investment enterprises in 2018 decreased by 1% compared to 2017, reaching RO 2.33 billion, as the salaries and wages of Omanis decreased by 1.4%, recording RO 1.23 billion, while the salaries and wages of expatriates decreased by 3.6%, recording 1.09 billion.
Oil and Gas and construction activities collectively received about 39.7% of total salaries and wages in 2018, while salaries and wages in the oil and gas activity represented 23.3%, and those in construction activity represented 16.4% of the total wages and salaries.
The foreign Omani investment registered an increase of 5.4% at the end of 2018 to reach RO 6.81 billion compared to RO 6.06 billion in 2017.
Other types of Omani investment included commercial credit, deposits and loans that represented the highest percentage, equivalent to 42.4% of the total Omani investments abroad in 2018, while direct Omani investment and investment in portfolios accounted for 27.4% and 30% of the total Omani investments abroad, respectively.
The Omani direct investment increased by 0.8% in 2018, compared to 2017. This increase is attributed to the increase in the investment of the oil and gas extraction sector by 0.5%, and real estate sector, leasing and commercial project activities by 0.2% during 2018 compared to 2017.
The total income from Omani investment abroad reached RO 118,300 million in 2018, which is a decrease by 3.7% compared to 2017, while the income from direct investments decreased by 3%, as well the income from other investments decreased by 4.6%.
The United Arab Emirates is considered the most important destination for Omani direct investment abroad at the end of 2018 , reaching RO 423,100 million, representing 22.7% of the total Omani direct investment abroad, followed by Kuwait with 9.3%, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia by 4.9% and the Republic of India by 2.2%.
Foreign Investment Bulletin Issue (14) click here