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Oman industry leaders discuss job creation

Increase in minimum salary in private sector will cut migration to public sector, says official

Gulf News

Muscat: A senior private sector figure wants Omani youth to inculcate values of work culture and passion for work to increase employees’ productivity.

“Private sector companies who employ a large number of Omanis require more people who are productive and efficient,” Hussain Salman Al Lawati, managing director, Oman Cables Industry, said during the annual Oman Forum organised by Alam Al Iktisaad Wal A’mal (AIWA), Oman’s business magazine published by the UMS Group. This year’s topic was Job Creation – the National Agenda.

“Work culture is not something which one learns from the school, university or through training. It has to start from home. People have to be taught to love their work instead of loving their salary,” he said.

Ahmad Al Wahaibi, CEO, Oman Oil Co, on the other hand, believes that companies should put emphasis on training employees to meet the changing demands. “Everybody has a role to play in creating more job opportunities for Omanis. The companies must give training for their employees in Oman instead of sending them outside the country,” he suggested.

During a no-holds-barred discussion on the challenges of job creation and business growth, Mohsin Al Beloushi, Adviser at the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, stressed that job creation was a collective responsibility of the government, the public as well as private sector companies.

“The role of the government is to create an atmosphere conducive for job creation through investment in education and infrastructure development,” he said.

Talking about the necessity of concerted efforts to ensure better coordination between the private and public sector and the society at large, he said bodies like Shura Council could play a constructive role in bridging the gap between the society and the decision-making bodies.

Replying to a question during the panel discussion, Muna Al Jardainya, Undersecretary at the Ministry of Manpower, said: “The Ministry of Manpower accords more importance to training the employees in general and the government partly bears the on-the-job training expenses for a year in a private company.”

Salim Bin Nasir Al Hadhrami, Director General of Training and Planning at the Ministry of Manpower, said the recent decision to increase the minimum salary will be helpful in drawing more people to the private sector and reducing the migration of employees to the public sector, though it may be initially challenging to small and medium sector companies.

“The private sector cannot expect the government to give them fully equipped employees to do the job,” Darwish Bin Esmail Bin Ali Al Beloushi, Minister Responsible for Financial Affairs, said while replying to a question during the forum.