Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Legal Updates - December 31, 2014

Amendments to the Land Law

The Land Law promulgated by Royal Decree 5 of 1980 (as amended) has been further amended by Royal Decree 56 of 2014, effective as of 14 October 2014.


Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Restructuring an Entity: The Right to Transfer Employees from a Group of Entities under Omani Law

Generally as a matter of Omani law, an Employer (as defined by the Oman Labour Law, as promulgated by Royal Decree 35 of 2003 (“OLL”) is entitled to restructure and/or re-organise its business and consequently the workforce, for economic, technical or structural reasons. Further a Supreme Court decision in Oman has held that an Employer has the absolute power and authority to reorganise its business, be responsible for the management of the same for the realisation of profits therefrom and to assume responsibility for any failure of its business.


Monday, December 15, 2014

How to Manage Contract Risk in Procurement (Part 1)

An Overview

In a series of articles commencing this month, we look at the relevant issues facing procurement specialists when managing risk in procurement contracts and offer some guidance and assistance when doing so. We start this month with a general introduction and will, next month, deal with specific legal issues arising and how best to deal with them in order to minimise such risks.


Wednesday, December 10, 2014

An Overview of the Establishment of the Public Authority for Mining

In keeping with its aim to develop the mining sector to achieve optimal exploitation of mineral resources in a manner that will best serve the development goals in the Sultanate, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (“MOCI”) issued Royal Decree 49 of 2014 on 21 September 2014 which established a Public Authority for Mining in Oman (the “Authority”).


Thursday, December 4, 2014

Construction Sector Update: How the Ministerial Decision No. 174/2014 May Affect Your Business

The Regulation of the Works of Institutions and Companies Operating in the Contracting Field (the “Regulation”), enacted pursuant to Ministerial Decision No. 174 of 2014, came into force on the 19th June 2014 with the aim to supervise construction companies and monitor their activities more closely and, in particular, with regards to ensuring that construction companies adhere to health and safety obligations as set out in the Regulation.


Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Legal Updates - December 2, 2014

Omanisation Percentage of Employees in the Electricity and Water Sectors

Ministerial Decision 284 of 2014 (“MD 284/2014”) which came into force on September 8, 2014 specifies the percentage of Omani employees working in the electricity and water sectors that must be complied with.


Tuesday, November 25, 2014

What Classifies as an Omani Product?

Under Omani Law there is no clear definition of “Omani Product.” In practice for the purposes of considering a product as an Omani Product, many ministries including the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (“MOCI”) looks into a product’s (a) origin and manufacture; and (b) outsourcing prior to classifying the product as an “Omani Product.”


Thursday, November 20, 2014

An Overview of the Amended Unified Agreement on the Investment of Arab Capital in the Arab States

The signing, in 1980, of the Unified Agreement on the Investment of Arab Capital in the Arab States (the “Agreement”) was an attempt by MENA countries to set up a regional and enforceable investment regime that would encourage nationals in the wealthy Arab States to invest in the region’s poorer countries. The purpose behind such signing was to strengthen overall Arab development and Arab economic integration.


Monday, November 10, 2014

Current Trends and Market Developments in the International Funds Industry

In evaluating a prospective investment in a collective investment vehicle, an investor should consider how such vehicle’s offering terms align not only with such investor’s commercial and risk profile, but also how such terms align with the terms offered in the broader international funds industry. This article provides an overview of current developments and market trends in the international funds industry that we have identified in connection with advising our clients on their investment activities.


Monday, November 3, 2014

The Civil Transactions Law and the Impact of the Muqawala Provisions on Construction

The Civil Transactions Law (the “Code”), enacted pursuant to Royal Decree 29 of 2013, and having come into force in Oman on August 13, 2013, is a codification of Omani (and to some degree Egyptian) jurisprudence, as developed over past decades. The Code contains a section on “Muqawala” (a contract to make a thing, or perform a task) which impacts directly on construction activities in Oman and is the focus of this article.


Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Legal Updates - October 29, 2014

RD 49/14 establishes the Public Authority for Mining

On September 22, 2014, RD 49/14 established the Public Authority for Mining (“Authority”) and its system. The Authority shall be affiliated with the MOCI and shall act as a legal entity with full authority and eligibility to own, manage, and dispense fixed and movable funds. The Royal Decree is effective from the date of its issuance.


Monday, October 27, 2014

How does Electronics Transactions Law impact Electronic Transactions in Oman?

Oman’s Electronic Transactions Law (promulgated by RD 69/08, as amended) (the “ETL”) governs electronic contractual agreements. The ETL shall apply to parties who agree to conduct their transactions electronically. Such consent by the parties is inferred from their conduct. Electronic transactions are contractual agreements that are “entered into or executed totally or partially through electronic records.”

This article briefly covers the fundamental principles of the ETL and how it may affect any contractual agreement entered into electronically.


Thursday, October 23, 2014

What are the benefits of an excellent grade company?

Whilst registering a limited liability company (“LLC”) in Oman, clients often enquire about the upside of incorporating an LLC with higher capital and how does the grade specified by the MOCI benefit the LLC.


Monday, October 13, 2014

The new Omani Nationality Law: How big is the departure from the old law?

The Sultanate of Oman recently issued a new Omani Nationality Law (RD 38/14) (“New Law”) which replaces the earlier Omani Nationality Regulatory Law promulgated by RD 3/83 (“Old Law”).


Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Amendment to Insurance Company Law - What are the new regulatory requirements?

Royal Decree 39/14 issued on August 12, 2014 introduces new regulatory requirements for insurance companies (“Royal Decree”).


Monday, September 29, 2014

Legal Updates - September 29, 2014

Oman and Japan: Double Tax Treaty

Royal Decree 23/14 has ratified the convention between the governments of the Sultanate of Oman and Japan as on page 2 on the avoidance of double taxation and prevention of fiscal evasion with respect to taxes on income (the “Convention”). The Convention was signed earlier in the year on January 9, 2014.


Monday, September 22, 2014

Promotional Offers in the Sultanate of Oman

Promotions and Promotional Offers are governed and regulated by Ministerial Decision No 239 of 2013 (“MD 239/13”) of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (“MOCI”).

According to MD 239/13 Promotional Offer is defined as “any scheme that provides offers that promote a specific commodity or service during a specific time in return for giving the consumer a prize, gift, service or any other benefit”.


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Common Issues Arising from Dispute Resolution Clauses

When drafting commercial contracts, one must be particularly careful in ensuring that all legal and commercial terms are unambiguous and carefully constructed. This is especially true for dispute resolution clauses. This article explores common issues that arise from poorly constructed dispute resolution clauses, and suggests tips on how to ensure that these clauses are succinctly drafted.


Monday, September 8, 2014

Dodd Frank Legislation in the US and its Impact on Swap Clearing Requirements in Oman

The Dodd Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (the “Dodd Frank Act” or the “Act”) became law on July 21, 2010. Whilst the Dodd Frank Act has established a comprehensive reform of the United States (“US”) financial regulatory system, and has made changes to most of the financial industry, the focus of this article is based on the Act’s effect on swaps. In particular, this article addresses the requirement that certain swaps need to be cleared through clearing houses (“clearing requirements”).


Friday, August 29, 2014

Spotlight on Amendments to Commercial Agencies Law of Oman

In July, Oman’s Commercial Agencies Law (“CAL”) was amended by virtue of a new law, Royal Decree 34/14.

It is one of the most significant changes in Omani law in recent times.


Introducing Florian A. Maier-Leonhardt

We are pleased to announce that Florian A. Maier-Leonhardt is joining the Muscat office in September as a counsel in the Corporate and Commercial team. Florian is a German attorney-at-law, admitted to the Munich Bar Association. He has lived and worked as a corporate and commercial lawyer in the UAE and the Sultanate of Oman since 2006. Prior to joining Curtis, Florian was working with an international law firm in Abu Dhabi and a local law firm in Muscat.


Thursday, August 28, 2014

Legal Updates - August 28, 2014

Royal Decree 34 of 2014: Amending some provisions of the Commercial Agencies Law

The Commercial Agencies Law promulgated by Royal Decree 26 of 1977 (as amended) deals with the relationship between a manufacturer or supplier (the “Principal”) with no legal existence in Oman and a company or merchant in Oman (the “Agent”) who enter into an agreement. The agreement would permit the Agent to sell, promote or distribute the goods, products or services of the Principal. The latest set of amendments to the Commercial Agencies Law is Royal Decree 34 of 2014 (the “RD”) effective from July 21, 2014.


Wednesday, August 20, 2014

New US Trade Case Against Oman

On May 29, 2014, one of the largest producers of steel nails requested that the US Department of Commerce (“Commerce”) and the International Trade Commission (“ITC”) impose antidumping and countervailing duties (“CVD”) on imports of steel nails from seven countries, including Oman. This trade case comes two years after Commerce imposed antidumping duties on imports of steel nails from the United Arab Emirates and five years after such duties were imposed on steel nail imports from China. US manufacturer Mid-Continent Steel and Wire Inc. (“Mid-Continent”) filed a CVD and antidumping petition (the “Petition”) alleging that unfairly traded imports from the seven countries are materially injuring the US industry. The ITC on July 11, 2014 rendered an affirmative preliminary injury determination in relation to this trade case. Accordingly, such an affirmative determination means that this trade case will now pass to Commerce for an investigation as to whether or not the Omani Government has bestowed countervailing subsidies to Omani exporters.


Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Basel III Principles and Their Application to Banks in Oman

The Central Bank of Oman (“CBO”) has introduced the latest set of global regulatory standards known as Basel III to Omani banks. Basel III is a global, voluntary regulatory set of standards governing bank capital adequacy, stress testing and market liquidity risk. This third installment of the Basel Accord was developed in response to the deficiencies in financial regulation revealed in the aftermath of the global financial crisis in the late 2000s.


Monday, August 4, 2014

Essentials of Intellectual Property and Copyright Laws in Oman

Oman has in recent years made a concerted effort to provide comprehensive laws for the protection of intellectual property. This is demonstrated by the Industrial Property Law promulgated by Royal Decree 67 of 2008 (as amended by Royal Decree 131 of 2008) (the “IPL”). The IPL repealed Royal Decree 38 of 2000 and includes measures to protect owners of trademarks, patents and topography as well as measures to protect against unlawful competition. In addition, the Law for the Protection of Copyright and Neighbouring Rights (the “Copyright Law”) promulgated by Royal Decree 65 of 2008 was established to protect creative works of literature, arts and science and repealed Royal Decree 37 of 2000. This article provides a brief overview of the essential elements of both the IPL, specifically concerning trademarks, and the Copyright Law, as well as the penalties for non-compliance.


Friday, July 18, 2014

Legal Updates - July 18, 2014

Oman Ratification of the Arab Anti-Corruption Convention

The Sultanate of Oman recently ratified the Arab Convention against Corruption (the “Anti-Corruption Convention”) which was signed in Cairo on 21 December 2010, and consequently issued Royal Decree 28 of 2014 as the endorsement of the Anti-Corruption Convention. The ratification is in furtherance of the Sultanate’s decision to develop mechanisms to fight corruption together with GCC member States. The Royal Decree shall be effective from 21 May 2014.


Thursday, July 17, 2014

Expatriate Visa Restrictions

Recently, Oman newspapers have reported that visa restrictions affecting expatriates would be implemented. In mid-June, the Ministry of Manpower (the “MOM”) and the Royal Oman Police (the “ROP”), clarified the position on visa restrictions on expatriates.


Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Executive Regulations of Al Mazyounah Free Zone

Al Mazyounah Free Zone (the “Free Zone”) was established pursuant to the Royal Decree 103 of 2005 promulgating the establishment of the zone (the “Free Zone Law”). The Free Zone is located in Oman’s Dhofar region. It focuses on the processing, storage and shipment of products from Dhofari agricultural land, along with the automobile and industrial vehicle trade.


Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Disclosure Requirements of Quarterly Financial Results for Public Joint Stock Companies

Every public joint stock company (“SAOG”) in Oman is duty-bound to its shareholders and the regulator, the Capital Markets Authority (the “CMA”) to make timely disclosures of its financial statements. The provisions for disclosure of financial statements by SAOGs have been set out in Part VII of the Executive Regulation to the Capital Market Law (the “Executive Regulation”).


Friday, July 11, 2014

Fund Prospectus Requirements in Oman

An investment fund either established in or outside Oman which aims to issue Securities1 for public or private subscription by investors located in Oman, should obtain a license from the Capital Market Authority (the “CMA”) and the offering of such Securities must be conducted in accordance with such fund’s prospectus as set out in Article 3 of the Capital Market Law (the "CMAL”).


Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Legal Updates - July 9, 2014

The Formation of a Supreme Committee for Financial Stability

The Central Bank of Oman (“CBO”) recently issued Circular no. BM/55/3/2014 dated 18 March 2014 granting the establishment of “The Supreme Committee for Financial Stability” (the “Committee”).


Monday, July 7, 2014

Real Estate Owners' Associations in Oman

As the residential real estate market continues to develop in Oman, it may be the right time for the Government to consider clarifying the model system of real estate owners’ associations in Oman.


Tuesday, July 1, 2014

IPR Enforcement

As the commercial world has become increasingly globalised, as well as the rapidity by which information is disseminated, it is essential that intellectual property (“IP”) rights are adequately and sufficiently protected by legislation. In recent years, the Sultanate has taken further definite and proactive steps to ensure that IP rights are protected, including the enactment of The Law of Industrial Property Rights, promulgated by Royal Decree 67 of 2008 (the “IP Law”).


Friday, June 27, 2014

Real Estate Investment in Oman by GCC Nationals and Entities

The Law regulating the Ownership of Real Estate by Gulf Cooperation Countries (“GCC”) Nationals in the Member States for the purposes of Residence and Investment was issued by Royal Decree 21 of 2004 (the “GCC Law”).


Thursday, June 19, 2014

Selecting an Arbitrator - General Qualities

The selection of arbitrators can have a fundamental impact upon the success of an arbitral process. It is therefore important for the parties to have a clear appreciation as to the type of arbitrator they seek from the outset.


Thursday, June 5, 2014

Curtis Frankfurt is Moving

Curtis Frankfurt is relocating

Curtis Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle is pleased to announce the new address for its Frankfurt office. The office has relocated to larger premises in Frankfurt in order to accommodate the office’s thriving business.


Friday, May 30, 2014

Legal Updates - May 30, 2014

Extension of visa ban on construction workers and housekeepers

The Ministry of Manpower has by its directive dated 15 April 2014 extended the ban on hiring expatriate workers in construction and housekeeping jobs in the private sector. This ban will be effective from 4 May 2014. The ban was initially imposed in November 2013 for a period of six months.


Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Pitfalls of Buying Real Property in Oman From an Off-Site Plan

The issue with developing off-site plan real estate in Oman

Non-Omanis can purchase property in Integrated Tourism Complexes (“ITCs”) in Oman pursuant to the Law on Ownership of Real Estate within Integrated Tourist Complex by non-Omanis (promulgated by Royal Decree 12 of 2006, as amended) (the “Real Estate Law”). The ITCs formed pursuant to the Real Estate Law are: The Wave Muscat; Muscat Hills Golf and Country Club; Jebal Sifah; and Saraya Bandar Jissah.


Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Amendments to the Code of Corporate Governance

Corporate Governance is the method by which corporations are controlled, specifying how a corporation’s structure for decision-making is to be governed as well as setting out strategies for monitoring performance. Recently, the Capital Market Authority (“CMA”) in Oman circulated a draft Code of Corporate Governance (the “New Code”) which will, if approved, replace the existing Code of Corporate Governance issued by circular 1 of 2003 (together referred to as the “Codes”). Both the Codes set out that the provisions are obligatory on all public joint stock companies listed on the Muscat Stock Market and investment funds taking the form of public joint stock companies. The aim of the New Code, which is in line with the GCC Code of Corporate Governance, is to enhance and expand on the existing principles of corporate governance.


Monday, May 19, 2014

Franchise Agreements: A Franchisor's Perspective

Under Omani law franchise relationships fall under the ambit of the Commercial Agencies Law (the “CAL”) promulgated by Royal Decree No. 26 of 1977 (as amended). This is because the CAL states that “every agreement to which a manufacturer or supplier outside the Sultanate entrusts to one merchant or more, a commercial company or more in the Sultanate, the sale or promotion, or distribution of goods and products, or provision of services whether as an agent, or representative, or broker of the principle producer or supplier, who has no legal existence in the Sultanate,” is bound by the CAL. It should be noted that franchise agreements can be made subject to a non-Omani law, if coupled with an arbitration clause.


Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Focus on Fraud

Anti-corruption compliance programmes for companies operating in the Sultanate of Oman

Bribery and corruption made for some high-profile arrests and headlines in the Sultanate in 2013/14 which has highlighted the need for companies operating in Oman to have and maintain fully robust anti-corruption compliance programmes. This is to satisfy the demands of regulatory authorities in Oman as well as foreign headquarters in complying with local and international laws - some which have extraterritorial effect.


Monday, May 12, 2014

Legal Updates - May 12, 2014

Update on the US-Oman Free Trade Agreement (“FTA”) Transhipment Issue

The US Embassy recently circulated a ROP Customs circular clarifying the thorny issue of whether transshipment of US origin goods (meeting the 35% value added threshold) are eligible for a duty exemption under the US-Oman Free Trade Agreement (FTA). The Circular confirmed that such qualifying goods can be imported to Oman duty-free.

Under the FTA, Oman must give goods produced in the United States special duty rates as stipulated under this agreement (Article 2.3). The particular goods that are eligible for duty-free treatment or those subject to gradual elimination of duties over a 5-10 year period are detailed in Annex 2-B of the FTA. Oman must follow this provision unless the FTA provides an express exception. However, no exception in relation to goods arriving by land transportation is contained in the treaty. Further, the FTA states that where a US origin good is merely unloaded, reloaded and transported through another territory to the parties, it is still considered “imported directly” from the US and therefore eligible for the FTA duty rate (Articles 4.1 and 4.9).

Additionally, if customs officials decide to deny the FTA rate, they are required to issue a written decision containing the factual and the legal basis for denying the rate (Article 4.1, paragraph 3). If the ROP have a doubt as to the eligibility of goods for the FTA rate, the burden is on the ROP to prove the ineligibility. The FTA does not require certificates of origin; however, Article 4.10 expands on what custom officials do require.


Thursday, May 8, 2014

Anti-Dumping Law: Oman Perspective

Dumping: Meaning?

The World Trade Organisation (“WTO”) has defined “dumping”, in the context of international trade, as a pricing strategy whereby manufacturers/producers export their products/produce to another country at a price lower than the price charged in their home market. It can be described as a form of price discrimination.


Friday, May 2, 2014

The Role of Experts in Omani Courts

The Omani judicial system is inquisitorial in nature; judges have the ultimate authority to make inquiries and to investigate the facts and evidential documentation of the cases before them. At times, the court decides to appoint an expert to assist it in its decision-making process.


Monday, April 28, 2014

Overview of Insurance Policies in Omani Construction Contracts

Over the past decade, Oman has experienced tremendous economic and infrastructural growth, and the number of construction projects has substantially risen throughout the Sultanate.


Monday, April 21, 2014

Compliance With Advertising Regulations

Ministerial Decision 143/2000 defines advertisement as “any writing, painting or picture prepared for publicity, propaganda or guidance to the name of a commercial, industrial or professional shop, product, service or any other business. An advertisement may be fixed, mobile, lighted by power or not lighted, hung or one prepared for printing or distribution among citizens.”


Thursday, April 17, 2014

Whistleblowing Policy in Oman

Whistleblowers play a key role in exposing corruption, fraud, incorrect financial reporting and other wrongdoing in every business and public agency. Usually the first people to suspect unlawful or improper conduct are those who work within or with the organisation. A typical organisation loses five percent of its revenues to fraud each year1 and the longer the misconduct lasts, the more money the company or organisation will stand to lose.


Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Legal Updates - April 15, 2014

Ministerial Decision issuing Executive Regulations of Al Mazyoona Free Zone

The Ministry of Commerce and Industry issued Ministerial Decision No. 3/2014 issuing regulations for the operations of Al Mazyoona Free Zone. We are in the process of analyzing the regulations and may have an article in the coming month.


Friday, April 11, 2014

Leave Entitlement Under Labour Law

The Omani Labour Law (promulgated by Royal Decree 35/2003, as amended) (“OLL”) covers leave entitlements available to employees working in Oman.


Tuesday, April 8, 2014

UN Convention Against Corruption and Anti-Money Laundering

Last month, we discussed Oman’s ratification of the UN Convention against Corruption (the “UN Convention”) endorsed by Royal Decree 64/2013; the existing legislations in Oman against corruption; and the measures to be adopted by the Government in the public sector, private sector and the judiciary to prevent corruption in accordance with the guidelines specified in the UN Convention. In this article, we summarise certain aspects of Oman’s existing legislation relating to anti-money laundering and discuss the link between provisions of the existing legislation and the UN Convention.


Thursday, April 3, 2014

Mediation Process: An Overview

Although mediation remains a largely unexplored dispute resolution mechanism throughout much of the GCC, it could certainly be a useful method for disputing parties to reach an amicable and expeditious resolution. This article will provide an overview of the mediation process, the role of the mediator, and will briefly discuss some of the benefits to mediation.


Tuesday, April 1, 2014

The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (April 2014)

FATCA stands for The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (“FATCA”) which was approved by the US Congress in March 2010. The law was scheduled to become effective from 1st January 2014, but the effective date has been postponed until 1st July 2014. This sweeping new law and its extraterritorial application is already influencing the behavior of Omani and other GCC banks and financial institutions and imposing structural, legal and commercial challenges on them to be compliant.


Monday, March 31, 2014

Legal Updates - March 31, 2014

Ministerial Decisions Stops the Issuing of fresh visas to non-Omanis

The Ministry of Manpower issued two Ministerial Decisions No. 617/ 2013 and 618/2013 regulating certain professions. As per MD 617/2013, no work permits will be issued for a period of six (6) months to private sector companies whose core business activities are:  carpentry workshops, aluminum workshops, blacksmithing workshops and brick factories. This decision is not applicable to establishments registered under the excellent grade category and the international grade companies. The decision is effective from 1 January 2014.

MD 618/2013 provides that non-Omanis will not be issued work permits to work as car engineers, debt collectors, cashier and storekeepers.  MD 618/2013 does not specify any period of time for this restriction. The MD also does not specify that establishments registered under excellent grade category and international grade companies are excluded. The decision is effective from 1 January 2014.


Friday, March 28, 2014

Warranties Under the Civil Code

The Omani Civil Code, promulgated by Royal Decree 29/2013, has provided clarity and guidance on several key facets of commercial and civil transactions. One key area relates to warranties.

This article provides an overview in this regard.


Monday, March 24, 2014

Liability of Directors in Omani Companies

The Code of Corporate Governance

The Code of Corporate Governance (the “Code”) issued by the Capital Markets Authority and the Commercial Companies Law of Oman (promulgated by RD 4/74, as amended, “Company Law”) outlines the responsibilities of ‘Directors’ in Omani Companies and the liabilities which extend to them in this position. The Company Law applies to all joint stock companies and the Code is mandatory but only applies to public companies listed on the Muscat Securities Market.


Friday, March 14, 2014

Focus On: DUQM Special Economic Zone

In 2011, the Duqm Special Economic Zone (“SEZ”) was created pursuant to Royal Decree 119/2011. The aim of the SEZ is to contribute to the country’s GDP, to enhance the employment opportunities for Omanis and more importantly to boost the social and economic development of Wilayat Duqm. Since 2011, the SEZ continues to offer many opportunities for both Omanis and foreign investors.


Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Due Diligence - The Devil is in the Details

We continue our series of articles on acquisitions by looking at the topic of due diligence.


Monday, March 10, 2014

The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (March 2014)

FATCA stands for The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (“FATCA”) which was approved by the US Congress in March 2010. The law was scheduled to become effective from 1st January 2014, but the effective date has been postponed until 1st July 2014. This sweeping new law and its extraterritorial application is already influencing the behavior of Omani and other GCC banks and financial institutions and imposing structural, legal and commercial challenges on them to be compliant.


Thursday, March 6, 2014

Oman's Ratification of the UN Convention Against Corruption

The Sultanate of Oman recently ratified the UN Convention against Corruption (the “UN Convention”) and consequently issued Royal Decree 64/2013 as the endorsement of the UN Convention. The ratification is in furtherance of the Sultanate’s decision to develop coordinated anti-corruption policies.


Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Legal Updates - February 25, 2014

Royal Decree ratifying the Sultanate's joining the United Nations Convention against Corruption

In the attempt to prevent and eradicate corruption in the Sultanate of Oman, his Majesty the Sultan Qaboos bin Said has recently issued Royal Decree 64/2013 ratifying the Sultanate in joining the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (the “UNCAC”).


Tuesday, February 18, 2014

A Brief Overview of the Electronic Transactions Law in Oman

As a direct result of Oman’s enlarged presence in the global economy, it became essential for Oman to develop a reliable and controlled medium for transactions to be carried out through electronic means. Accordingly, in 2008, the legislature in Oman passed the Electronic Transactions Law (the “Law”), promulgated by Royal Decree 69/2008.


Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Non-Compete Clauses Under the Oman Civil Code

In today’s environment, we very often come across employment contracts with non-compete clauses as a mechanism to protect an employer’s business interests from unfair exploitation by former employees. Whilst non-compete covenants are acceptable in most Western jurisdictions, they have historically been regarded less enthusiastically by the Omani Courts and have not always been upheld.


Friday, February 7, 2014

Enforcement of Foreign Awards and Judgments in the Sultanate of Oman

As a matter of policy, the Omani government constantly aspires to develop and maintain strong relations with other countries, and such is reflected in its foreign policies. Accordingly, Oman has adopted several mechanisms for the enforceability in Oman of foreign court judgments (which are final and non-appealable) and arbitral awards.


Monday, February 3, 2014

Legal Updates - February 3, 2014

RD 60/2013: Amending some provisions of Tender Law

Royal Decree No. 60/2013 issued and effective from 31 October 2013 amends certain provisions of the Tender Law. We are in the process of analysing the amendments and shall give a detailed update next month.


Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Construction Disputes in Oman - Here and Now

On 12 November 2013, Curtis, Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle LLP was invited to speak at the Chartered Institute of Building Masterclass on Delay, Dispute Resolution, and Management of Construction Contracts held in association with Hill International.

The following are some of the areas which were covered by Curtis in its presentation to the delegates.


Friday, January 17, 2014

Amendments to Sector Law

Amendments to the Law for the Regulation and Privatisation of the Electricity and Related Water Sector (the “Sector Law”) promulgated by Royal Decree No. 78/04 as amended.


Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Investment Funds

Investment funds have become increasingly popular investment structures in Oman, with several funds becoming active in the market recently. These investment funds may be formed and organized either in Oman or outside of Oman. For an investment fund established outside of Oman targeting investors located in Oman, such fund must comply with the Oman Capital Market Law (Royal Decree No. 80/98) and other applicable laws. Investment funds established in Oman must also comply with the Oman Capital Market Law and regulations issued by the Capital Market Authority (the “CMA”). In this article we focus on the key formation and establishment considerations for investment funds to be established in Oman.


Thursday, January 2, 2014

GCC Family Businesses - Corporate Governance

Some of the most successful companies worldwide remain family businesses - for example, Walmart, Ford, Cargill and Bombardier in North America, Peugeot, IKEA and LVMH in Europe and Tata, Samsung and Toyota in Asia. The most successful family firms are built and sustained across generations. Many of the Western family businesses have instituted corporate governance structures that continue to have the active involvement of members of the original founding family.