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New ex-pat employment law
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MuscatGary



Joined: 03 Jun 2013
Posts: 885
Location: Flying around the ME...

PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2014 8:01 am    Post subject: New ex-pat employment law Reply with quote

As of the 1st July no ex-pat who leaves the country will be allowed to come back until after two years has expired.

http://www.timesofoman.com/News/33638/Article-2-year-ban-for-expats-returns
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pooroldedgar



Joined: 07 Oct 2010
Posts: 81

PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2014 8:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This just means 2 years to get another work visa, right? I'm leaving in July, surely I can return in August. Right?
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MuscatGary



Joined: 03 Jun 2013
Posts: 885
Location: Flying around the ME...

PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2014 8:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You can return as a tourist as far as I can see but you can't work for another employer for two years. This effectively means that anybody who works for an agent can't switch to direct hire from now on in.
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pooroldedgar



Joined: 07 Oct 2010
Posts: 81

PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2014 8:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

So if I complete my one year contract with TATI, I can either renew or leave? No other Oman jobs?
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MuscatGary



Joined: 03 Jun 2013
Posts: 885
Location: Flying around the ME...

PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2014 9:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

pooroldedgar wrote:
So if I complete my one year contract with TATI, I can either renew or leave? No other Oman jobs?


That does seem to be the case.
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Sleepwalker



Joined: 02 Feb 2007
Posts: 374
Location: Reading the screen

PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2014 10:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is a return to the old law.

The system used to be that if your employer gave you a No Objection Certificate (NOC) then you could transfer jobs. Otherwise you left the country for two years.

I am trying to find out if this will again be the case.
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CVN-76



Joined: 28 Mar 2014
Posts: 116

PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2014 11:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

MuscatGary wrote:
As of the 1st July no ex-pat who leaves the country will be allowed to come back until after two years has expired.



If I'm on a two-year contract, I can't go anywhere outside of Oman? I can't run to Dubai on a weekend getaway while honoring my contract? Surely there has to be some sort of grace period. The law wouldn't kick in unless I was gone more than a certain minimum number of days, especially if I have a multi-entry visa, at least one would think.

Also, if I complete my two-year contract, I will guess I will still be able to immediately go to work for another employer right after without being required to leave for two years. If I have to re-sign with the same employer, that sounds like servitude.
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1st Sgt Welsh



Joined: 13 Dec 2010
Posts: 541
Location: Salalah, Oman

PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2014 1:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

To me this whole thing sounds pretty ominous. As far as I can see the ones who are probably going to be most hurt by this are not the expat teachers, but migrant workers from, for example, South Asia who are working construction etc.

CVN-76 wrote:
MuscatGary wrote:
As of the 1st July no ex-pat who leaves the country will be allowed to come back until after two years has expired.



If I'm on a two-year contract, I can't go anywhere outside of Oman? I can't run to Dubai on a weekend getaway while honoring my contract? Surely there has to be some sort of grace period. The law wouldn't kick in unless I was gone more than a certain minimum number of days, especially if I have a multi-entry visa, at least one would think.
.


Surely that can't be the case. Most skilled expats would not consider Oman if they couldn't get away for their holidays and weekends etc. I'm sure a lot of expats do choose to stay in Oman during their breaks, but, that's very different from being told you have to.
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Sleepwalker



Joined: 02 Feb 2007
Posts: 374
Location: Reading the screen

PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2014 6:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Going in and out for breaks isn't a problem

The 2 year ban means that if you complete your contract and resign then you must exit the country for 2 years before you can work in Oman again.

This used to be the case in the past and it was common for people to choose employers who were known to give NOC letters to allow staff to transfer employers. It was hailed as a massive step forward when the system ended.

There has been increasing press in recent weeks about employers poaching staff, the number of Indians in Oman (and fears that they will soon outnumber Omanis) and setting quotas for certain nationalities. This seems to be a knee jerk reaction and we will have to wait and see.
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CVN-76



Joined: 28 Mar 2014
Posts: 116

PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2014 7:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Man, oh man. They can't keep from mucking up the works, making it more difficult for us. I have an easy solution--if one is entering Oman on a teaching visa, he/she should have the freedom to go to work for a new employer immediately after completing a two-year contract. No problem. But that would be sensible. It would even make sense penalizing those who did runners with this two-year ban, beginning the day they left Oman. But that would make even more sense. Instead, the gov't will start penalizing those who play fair, by the rules, and complete their contract commitments without giving any trouble. Those people will have to leave Oman for 2 years simply because they finish up legitimately yet wish to move on to better pay, et al.
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1st Sgt Welsh



Joined: 13 Dec 2010
Posts: 541
Location: Salalah, Oman

PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2014 11:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

CVN-76 wrote:
Man, oh man. They can't keep from mucking up the works, making it more difficult for us. I have an easy solution--if one is entering Oman on a teaching visa, he/she should have the freedom to go to work for a new employer immediately after completing a two-year contract. No problem. But that would be sensible. It would even make sense penalizing those who did runners with this two-year ban, beginning the day they left Oman. But that would make even more sense. Instead, the gov't will start penalizing those who play fair, by the rules, and complete their contract commitments without giving any trouble. Those people will have to leave Oman for 2 years simply because they finish up legitimately yet wish to move on to better pay, et al.


Hear, hear!
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Sleepwalker



Joined: 02 Feb 2007
Posts: 374
Location: Reading the screen

PostPosted: Mon May 12, 2014 11:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I read in the newspaper today that the NOC is under consideration although no decision has yet been taken - fingers crossed.
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MuscatGary



Joined: 03 Jun 2013
Posts: 885
Location: Flying around the ME...

PostPosted: Tue May 13, 2014 5:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sleepwalker wrote:
I read in the newspaper today that the NOC is under consideration although no decision has yet been taken - fingers crossed.


The Ministry of Manpower are now saying that the papers got it wrong! Have a look here: http://www.muscatmutterings.com/2014/05/ministry-of-manpower-clarifies-recent.html
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Whatever will be



Joined: 05 Feb 2014
Posts: 108

PostPosted: Tue May 13, 2014 6:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Today's TIMES of OMAN (frontpage) that"...as per Article 11 in the Passport and Residence Act, any expat worker in Oman who leave their jobs will not be able to return to the country for two years, but clarified hat as per the old law, expats with a "no objection certificate" from their sponsor can return to a new job"

I have tried to get a no objection certificate from my sponsor for such simple things as opening a bank account and getting an Omani driving license. On both occasions, it was a major hassle and involved numerous emails and phone calls. It was only achieved after I threatened to fly back to my home country. Now, I'm trying to get a no objection certificate for a liquor license - another song and dance.
So, I have a hard time believing that my sponsor will issue a no objection certificate to free me up for an employment contract with the competition while at the same time, my sponsor looses me/ their commission from the Ministry of Manpower.
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Whatever will be



Joined: 05 Feb 2014
Posts: 108

PostPosted: Tue May 13, 2014 7:03 am    Post subject: A host of new restrictions on Oman's expatriate workforce Reply with quote

The government is seeking to reduce the expat labour force to 33 percent and a set of new rules have been introduced:

Expat workers cannot bring their spouses or children to Oman before six months of service.

Hiring expat women in many sectors has been restricted.
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