Oman’s SWF gets approval for $1bn infrastructure fund

The new fund will be targeting investors in the Gulf as well as funds from outside the region



Oman’s State General Reserve Fund (SGRF) has got government approval to launch a $1bn infrastructure fund that will invest in the tiny Gulf state’s infrastructure projects, a senior finance ministry official said on Thursday.

The non-OPEC oil producer, like some other Gulf states has been hit hard by low oil prices in the last two years leading to budget deficits.

Oman is also channeling funding into projects that are essential for the country’s non-oil future.

“They (SGRF) have got the legal settings and approvals,” he told Reuters, declining to be named as it is not publicly announced.

The new fund will be targeting investors in the Gulf as well as funds from outside the region, he said, adding that details will be announced by the SGRF.

SGRF could not be immediately reached for a comment.

The official also said Oman has no plans to introduce any fresh taxes this year and is ready to introduce the Value Added Tax (VAT) from 2019.

Read: Oman postpones VAT introduction until 2019

Oman is one of the financially weakest states in the Gulf and last month Fitch cut its rating of Oman’s debt to just above junk territory; Standard & Poor’s already rates Omani debt as junk.

Read: Oman lifts spending in 2018 budget