Oman's Royal Decree restructures water & wastewater sectors

Article 1 states that the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Water Resources will propose policies, strategies and plans on the water and wastewater (sewerage) sector and submit the proposals to the Council of Ministers for approval

  
Oman's Sultan Haitham bin Tariq meets with U.S. Secretary of State?Mike?Pompeo (not pictured) at al-Alam palace in Muscat, Oman February 21, 2020. Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/Pool via REUTERS

Oman's Sultan Haitham bin Tariq meets with U.S. Secretary of State?Mike?Pompeo (not pictured) at al-Alam palace in Muscat, Oman February 21, 2020. Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/Pool via REUTERS

Oman - His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik issued Royal Decree No 131/2020 on the water and wastewater sector on Wednesday.

Article 1 states that the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Water Resources will propose policies, strategies and plans on the water and wastewater (sewerage) sector and submit the proposals to the Council of Ministers for approval.

Article 2 stipulates that the Public Service Regulatory Authority will undertake the specialisations linked to the regulation of water and wastewater sector.

Article 3 states that Oman Wastewater Services Company will run the activities of water and wastewater in all governorates of the sultanate, except for the Governorate of Dhofar, where Dhofar Power Company will run water and wastewater activities.

Article 4 states that all origins, assets, registers, rights and obligations of the Public Authority for Water will come under the purview of Oman Wastewater Services Company, while Dhofar Power Company will take over all origins, assets, registers, rights and obligations of the Directorate-General of Water at the Office of Minister of State and Governor of Dhofar.

Also, all origins, assets, registers, rights and obligations related to the water and wastewater sector in all units of the State’s Administrative Apparatus will come under the purview of Oman Wastewater Services Company and Dhofar Power Company, as assigned to each, in line with provisions of the above-mentioned Article 1 and 2.

The transfer of responsibilities, as stated here, will not affect the legal commitments and contracts signed prior to the date of enforcement of this decree - which also applies to all rights and obligations stated in the above-mentioned articles in terms of taxes and fees.

Article 5 transfers employees of the Public Authority for Water to Oman Wastewater Services Company and transfers employees of the Directorate-General of Water at the Office of Minister of State and Governor of Dhofar to Dhofar Power Company, in accordance with the provisions of Privatisation Law promulgated under Royal Decree 51/2019.

It also transfers employees of Salalah Wastewater Services Company to Dhofar Power Company in accordance with the System of Transfer stated in Article (6) of this decree, but without prejudice to the privileges that might be applicable in their regard by virtue of another law.

Article 6 stipulates that the Ministry of Finance will undertake, in coordination with Oman Investment Authority, the responsibility of drafting and implementing the System of Transfer within a period of not more than six months from the date of enforcement of this decree.

Article 7 tasks Oman Investment Authority with taking measures to implement the provisions of this Royal Decree in accordance with provisions of Commercial Companies Law.

Article 8 states that, as of the date of issue of this decree, the existing laws, Royal Decrees and bylaws (regulations) of relevance to the water and wastewater sector will continue to be applied till such time that the ‘Law on Regulating the Water and Wastewater Sector’ is issued.

Article 9 cancels the Public Authority for Water with effect from the date of completion of implementation of the System of Transfer stated in Article 6 of this decree. It also cancels all that contradicts this decree or contravenes its provisions.

Article 10 states that this decree will be published in the Official Gazette and enforced from its date of issue.

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