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বাংলা
Dhaka Tribune

Embassy: Oman’s visa decision for Bangladesh not political, temporary in nature

  • Oman trying to streamline its forign labour market
  • Bangladeshis top the list of expats in Oman with a total of 703,840
Update : 02 Nov 2023, 02:52 PM

Oman’s decision to suspend issuing of all types of visas for Bangladeshis was temporary to streamline the regulation of the foreign labour market, not political, the Sultanate’s embassy in Dhaka said on Thursday.

“Oman recalls with utmost respect and gratitude the contributions made and being made by Bangladeshi expatriates while it values the close and brotherly relations with the government of the people’s republic of Bangladesh,” it said.

Oman on Tuesday in a notice suspended issuing all types of visas to Bangladeshi citizens until further notice. It, however, did not mention the reason while making the announcement on X, triggering a lot of speculation.

Bangladeshi nationals top the list of expatriate workers in Oman with the total reaching 703,840 individuals, followed by 530,242 Indians, according to a July report. The number has increased by more than 150,000 in the last year.

The suspension decision came weeks after a visit of an official delegation from Oman to Dhaka. Ambassador Dr Sulaiman Saud Al Jabri, head of the legal department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, led the visit from October 11-14.

During the meeting with Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen, the delegation showed interest in signing two MoUs with Bangladesh including one related to combating illegal migration and trafficking.

The embassy in Dhaka on Thursday clarified the content of the announcement issued by the Royal Oman Police and said it came in the context of a “comprehensive review process” being conducted by the relevant authorities in Muscat.

This is being done to “streamline the regulation of foreign labour market in line with the needs and employers per labour laws”.

“The decision to suspend issuance of visas includes other nationalities and it is temporary in nature. The competent authorities exerting their sincere efforts and keen to complete the review process as early as possible to resume visa issuance afresh in accordance with the guidelines and regulations that concludes the review process,” read the statement.

“In fact, the review process is based on technical and legal factors that serve and protect the interests of an expatriate worker and the employer as well as ensure the stability of the foreign labour market in Oman.

“The Sultanate of Oman gives values and deeply appreciates the contributions of Bangladeshi expatriate workforce to the development process and economic growth in Oman.

“Oman shows its keenness on enhancing bilateral relations with the People’s Republic of Bangladesh in a manner that serves the common interests of both countries,” the embassy said.

“We reiterate and reaffirm that the decision announced here is no way and under no circumstances is political in nature rather Oman recalls with utmost respect and gratitude the contributions made and being made by Bangladeshi expatriates while it values the close and brotherly relations with the government of the people’s republic of Bangladesh.”

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