Monthly Digest

Decree Monthly Digest – March 2022

Decree Monthly Digest is a summary of the most significant royal decrees and laws issued in the previous month.

Three royal decrees were issued in March and none of them related to the promulgation of any new laws. These royal decrees can be summarised as follows:

Royal Decree 10/2022 Establishing Free Zones in Muscat International Airport and Sohar and Salalah Airports

This decree established three new free zones in the airports of Muscat, Sohar, and Salalah. The operators of such free zones and companies working in them will, in accordance with the Law of Free Zones, be granted special incentives, advantages, and facilities that may include exemptions from income tax and minimum capital requirements. The royal decree stipulates that the operators of these free zones will be companies subordinate to the OIA as specified by the Council of Ministers.

Royal Decree 11/2022 Ratifying the Agreement between the Government of the Sultanate of Oman and the Government of Hungary for the Reciprocal Promotion and Protection of Investments

This decree ratified a bilateral investment treaty (BIT) between Oman and Hungary. This extremely powerful agreement grants rights to Omani and Hungarian investors to have their investment protected against actions by the other state, and allows them to commence international arbitration against these states in the case of the violation of the provisions of the BIT. Oman has signed more than 30 BITs with different countries over the years, but this is the first one it ratifies in the last five years.

Royal Decree 12/2022 Approving the Petroleum Agreement between the Government of the Sultanate of Oman and Almajd Gas Development LLC, Shell Integrated Gas Oman BV, Marsa Liquefied Natural Gas LLC, and Shell Development Oman LLC for Block 10

This royal decree ratified a new oil concession agreement for Block 10 in pursuance of article 9 of the Oil and Gas Law stipulating that a concession agreement shall not be effective until a royal decree is issued approving it.