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Two-year ban for those leaving Oman companies will be enforced


Possible problems afoot for individuals already working or planning to work in Oman; until now an non-objection letter (NOC) from a previous employer would ensure an employee’s right to work for a new Omani company. Now it seems, according to Omani national newspapers, that the Royal Oman Police will no longer permit company-to-company moves, unless the original employer is willing to lose an expatriate visa from its quota. Otherwise, leaving an employer will now translate into a two-year ban from employment in the Gulf country, basically rendering an NOC worthless.

For those intending to go and teach in Oman, this would mean that, should the job not turn out to be all you had hoped, job-hunting alternative positions within the country would be pointless, and you would be forced to look elsewhere.

For those already teaching in Oman, at the moment it would appear that even if you have completed your contract, you will not be exempt from the two-year ban.

In the past, if an employer granted an NOC, the worker could go on to pastures new within the country immediately. This will no longer be permitted, and the rule looks likely to include EFL teachers this time round, who, along with other professionals, have usually found themselves on the lenient side of employment ban legislation in Oman.

The only way of knowing exactly how this will pan out in practical terms is to keep an eye on EFL/ESL forums for reports from those affected first by the renewed strictness in applying the law, but it’s reasonable to assume not many employers will be willing or even able to contemplate losing a visa from their quota.