Egyptians warned against violating Oman tourist visas

Unauthorised companies helping labourers enter sultanate to work without the right permit, foreign ministry in Cairo says

MUSCAT. 1st March. 2009.BUDGET WEEKEND IN MUSCAT. View of the harbour and corniche in Mutrah, Muscat. Stephen Lock  /  The National. FOR TRAVEL. *** Local Caption ***  SL-muscat-013.jpg
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Egyptian labourers are entering Oman on tourist visas and staying to work, Egypt's foreign affairs ministry said.

The ministry warned citizens against violating the sultanate’s visa laws and blame the problem on third party companies.

“The ministry recently became aware that unauthorised companies and other entities are exploiting the desire among Egyptians to find work in the Sultanate of Oman,” the ministry said on Facebook.

“They are facilitating their entry under tourist visas with the intent of finding them work without a legal permit.”

The ministry urged citizens not to deal with “swindlers and scammers” and warned those doing so could face legal repercussions.

Work permits for Egyptians in Oman must be sponsored by employers.

Omani citizens can vouch for a worker with the sultanate’s Ministry of Labour, provided the person is over 18 and of the same sex as their sponsor.

The number of Egyptian expats in Oman rose from 30,998 at the end of last year to 33,294 in July, said an August report by Muscat-based Oman Observer.

An International Organisation for Migration report said last year that the number of Egyptian expats was somewhere between 10 million and 14 million.

This year, Egypt’s state statistics agency CAPMAS said that 65.8 per cent of Egyptian expats live in Arab countries, with Saudi Arabia housing around 30 per cent and the UAE 25 per cent.

Until the mid 1950s, Egyptians rarely relocated abroad. But in the 1960s and 1970s, amid worsening economic conditions and a population boom at home, millions of Egyptians relocated to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Qatar, answering the rising demand for labour in the countries’ booming oil sectors.

Updated: December 21, 2022, 8:23 AM