Muscat, As per the Government directives to

support the SMEs and provide job opportunities to the Omanis’ youth,

the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) signed a

Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Petroleum Development

Oman (PDO) to train 200 jobseekers for two years, which will guide the

trainees through to set up businesses in the telecommunication sector.

This initiative aims to Omanise jobs in the last mile connectivity

(LMC) services, which are now occupied by untrained non-Omanis that

contributes to unemployment levels among Omanis. Second, the

number of companies performing services has created unhealthy

competition by lowering prices beyond a sustainable level for well-

established businesses to survive. Third, there has been very little

regulation in the LMC sector, which has affected the quality of services

provided.

Dr. Hamad al Rawahi, TRA Executive President said, The LMC

program is a great example of the way we should look to work in the

ICT sector projects as we move towards the future of Oman. This is a

program that is designed and developed by Omanis, for the benefit of

Omanis in our great Sultanate.

In this regard, Raoul Restucci, PDO Managing Director, said:

We are determined to sustain our efforts to create employment and

business opportunities for jobseekers in a variety of economic sectors

including telecommunications. By joining forces with trusted partners,

such as the TRA, we aim not only to create job opportunities for young

Omanis, but also to equip them with the tools and skill sets which will

empower them to start their own businesses,” he added.

Omar bin Abdullah al-Qatabi, Chairman of the Project Steering

Committee said, This project is very ambitious as it would open new

opportunities for many SMEs in the telecom industry directly with the

licensed operators and would open the opportunity for the jobseekers.

The first phase started in early 2018, in which several concerned

stakeholders like the telecom operators, Oman Development Bank, the

National Business Centre, the Public Authority for SMEs Development

(Riyada), and others have been working jointly to develop a strategic

framework and governance policies to regulate the LMC services and to

accelerate national development of Omanis.

The second phase of the project is to create a pilot program that

is open to Omani SMEs that will develop a business through Oman’s

local business training incubator programs and through hands on

technical training in performing LMC services. These companies will be

primarily operated and run by Omanis, which will help to increase

opportunities for citizens and decrease unemployment numbers. The

program will also prepare the way for more local businesses to

participate in the ongoing national development occurring within the

Sultanate of Oman. The licensed telecom operators Omantel, Oredoo,

Oman Broadband and Awaser Oman have shown their commitment to

support these SMEs by giving them a number of monthly orders for

broadband installation.

Source: Oman News Agency