Oman’s Council of Ministers has said it is looking to create 25,000 jobs for nationals, as frustration grows about a lack of employment opportunities in the country.

In a statement released by state-run Oman News Agency, the Council said the new positions would be created in both the private and public sectors from December.

“The Council of Ministers, guided and inspired by the directives of Sultan Qaboos Bin Saeed, embarked on a year-long study on the issue of employment and came out with a number of decisions in support of Omani jobseekers, including a plan to provide 25,000 jobs in public and private establishments,” read the statement, as reported by Gulf News.

The Council said it would be clamping down on private sector establishments which were not cooperating with the government’s nationalisation drive, and called on them to give maximum priority to Omanisation, and to offer employment conditions that were attractive to locals.

It added that “actions would be taken against the establishments which do not cooperate with the efforts of the government in its strive to support employment and Omanisation policies”.

It has been suggested that the announcement of the directive stemmed from the popularity of a #Omaniswithoutjobs hashtag, which began trending on Twitter last month.

It generated more than 28,000 comments and 600,000 tweets, according to, as young people in particular vented their frustrations about a lack of opportunity in the labour market.

However a spokesperson from the Ministry of Manpower, was quoted on as saying: “We are currently keeping track of these hashtags. But there is very little that we can do to provide for the tens of thousands who are looking for jobs, currently.

“Our Omanisation drive is fully fledged and we are working towards improving the number of Omanis being hired in companies here.”

Data published by the National Center for Statistics and Information last month revealed that the number of jobseekers in Oman had increased by 11 per cent in the past year, with graduates making up the lion’s share. The numbers looking for work shot up in the months to July, reaching 50,000. The lack of opportunities for graduates within their chosen field has also led to many taking up ‘filler’ jobs.

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