Law Updates

NCSI Issues New Statistics and Information Regulation

The National Centre for Statistics and Information recently issued a new Executive Regulation of the Statistics and Information Law. The Statistics and Information Law was issued in 2019 replacing the Statistics Law of 2001, and this new regulation replaces the old Statistics Law Regulation of 2004.

Conducting surveys and polls is a regulated activity in Oman that requires obtaining a licence from NCSI for both commercial and non-commercial use. The new regulation explicitly states that universities, academics, students, and even government entities are required to obtain an approval (but not a licence) from NCSI before conducting any surveys or polls. The regulation also states in article 15 that government entities are required to obtain an approval from NCSI before using a third party to conduct a survey or a poll, and that such third party must obtain a licence from NCSI even if they are carrying a survey or a poll on behalf of the government.

The regulation provides a number of procedural and technical provisions relating to the conduct of statistical activity principals and delegates relating to ethics, data formats, places in which carrying surveys and polls is permitted, and much more.

Some of the more serious provisions in the regulation include article 10(11) which prohibits using outputs of statistical activities in a manner that offends the state or its accomplishments, article 24 which prohibits non-governmental entities from providing international and regional organisations with statistical data about Oman without the approval of NCSI, and article 25(8) which requires verifying that there is no discrepancy between the statistical data released and the data owned by NCSI.

The Executive Regulation of the Statistics and Information Law has already entered into force and can be read in full on the link below: