Expats in Oman to be allowed to buy non-ITC properties

Published:  24 Oct at 6 PM
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Oman’s Ministry of Housing is considering a proposal which would allow expats to buy homes outside its Integrated Tourism Complexes.

According to a spokesperson for the ministry, a proposal is being debated which allows expatriates to own properties in other designated districts apart from Muscat’s Integrated Tourism Complexes (ITC). At present, foreigners from outside the GCC can buy properties in the complexes either for investment or residential purposes, and citizens of GCC countries resident in Oman can purchase commercial, residential and industrial properties but aren’t allowed to buy agricultural properties.

ITC projects in which expatriates can buy an apartment or house include Barr al Jissah, Al Siffah Resort, Muscat Hills Golf and Country Club, Salalah Beach Resort and Saraya Bandar Jissah Muscat Bay. The proposal also states that foreigners who own property in the emirate may be granted residence permits which also include their families and relatives if required. According to recently released statistics, numbers of GCC citizens buying homes in the emirate have increased by just under 18 per cent over the past year.

An official from the ministry told local media that expats may soon be allowed to buy homes outside the ITCs, but regulations will be put in place to ensure increased demand will not cause land prices to soar, nor will the change be allowed to affect Omani culture and traditions. Real estate in Oman is now a major source of foreign investment, with demand for properties in the already popular ITC developments increasing year on year. The new proposal, if and when passed, is expected to spur the sector to even greater heights.
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