Setting The Scene

The telecommunications market in the Sultanate of Oman is one of the most vital sectors to the Omani economy. It is a national asset which contributes to society, to business and to government.

Since the blessed Renaissance in 1970 the market has evolved in line with the national development vision set in place by His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said and implemented through His Majesty’s Government.

In 2002, the Telecoms Act was issued by Royal Decree 30/2002 which established the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority. This set the Omani telecoms strategy on the right path for development, and since then, a number of significant milestones have been achieved in the improvement of services, prices, increased consumer choices, and improved performance of the sector as a whole. Competition has helped in the creation of new jobs, fuelling economic growth, improving quality of life, health and education for the citizens and residents of Oman.

2003 – The Telecoms Liberalisation Policy was approved by the Government.

2004 – The first fixed public telecommunication network licence was awarded to Omantel, and the first mobile public telecommunications service licence was awarded to Oman Mobile.

2005– The second mobile public telecommunications service licence was awarded to the Omani Qatari Telecoms Company (Nawras).

2006– TRA introduced number portability in the mobile sector. Oman was the first country in the Gulf region to implement this.

2007– The Telecoms Act was amended for the first time; TRA invited internet service provider applications and mobile re-sale services in an effort to introduce more competition in the mobile market sector.

2008– TRA issued five Class II licences for the provision of mobile re-sale services to the following licensees:

  • Majan Telecom LLC (Renna)
  • Connect Arabia LLC (Friendi)
  • Injaz International Telecom LLC
  • Mazoon National Telecoms LLC
  • Kalaam Telecom LLC

2009 – The second fixed public telecommunications network licence was awarded to the Omani Qatari Telecoms Company (Nawras). TRA issued the Universal Service Obligation policy and implementation strategy. Samatel was granted a Class II licence for mobile reseller services.

2010 – Nawras launched fixed services. Via Cloud was granted a Class II licence for mobile reseller services.

2010 – Azyan Telecom issued Class III VSAT Private Network License

2011 – Samatel was granted a Class I international telephony license. TRA undertook a restructuring process, a new Board of Directors and Chief Executive Officer were appointed. 

2011 – Rignet Middle East issued Class III VSAT Private Network License

2012– Awaser Oman & Co. issued Class I Fixed License for the Muscat Area

2013– Madakhil Investment issued Class I Maritime License

2013– Connect Arabia International issued Class I International Gateway License