(MENAFN - Muscat Daily) According to the Central Bank of Oman (CBO), the future prospects of the Omani economy in 2014 and beyond remain promising, taking into account the pace of economic diversification, favourable oil prices, sustained domestic demand, accommodative monetary policy, large expenditures planned by the government and the role of the private sector in the development process.
In its annual report released on Thursday, the CBO said that the diversification of the economy with the development of the industrial and services sector is the current focus of the government. ''The development of agriculture and fishing is also important to reduce food imports. The banking sector will continue to play an active role in providing credit to the growing sectors of the economy and stimulating growth.''
CBO said that while the major objective in the industrial sector is attaining faster industrial growth, aided by improved productivity and efficiency, it is being realised that the development of SMEs in the sultanate is also important.
''There could be a need to remove rigidities in the industrial sector, which would not only regenerate the required production growth, but also promote much greater industrial employment. The manufacturing sector particularly needs a push so that it could become more competitive,'' CBO's annual report said.
It said that the government is focusing on intensifying efforts in developing the financial sector, financing the private sector, improving the investment climate and developing infrastructure. ''All these factors taken together will act as a major push in developing the industrial sector. The service sector in Oman is emerging as an important growth driver. The improved growth performance witnessed across most sections of the services sector bears testimony to the relative contribution of this sector to overall growth.'