The System of Non-Omani Ownership of Real Estate in Integrated Tourism Complexes
Non-Omani natural or juridical personalities are allowed to own lands or constructed units by way of legally recognized proprietary rights to land, for residential or investment purposes in integrated tourism complexes licensed by competent government agencies.
Without prejudice to the right of the State to restrict ownership in any integrated tourism complex to Omani nationals, the Executive Regulations shall set forth the procedures, rules, conditions and criteria for Omani and Non-Omani ownership in integrated tourism complexes.
Subject to the approval of the Ministry of Tourism, a usufructuary, corporate or individual who have acquired properties in integrated tourism complexes and have provided them with public services and utilities, may dispose of built units or land subdivisions prepared for building subject to the payment of an upgrade levy to the Ministry of Housing, Electricity and Water. The amount of the upgrade levy shall be proportional to the total value of the land held in usufruct. The Executive Regulations shall determine the value of the upgrade levy contingent upon the approval of the Ministry of Finance.
The owner may sell built units at any time. However, any one who bought a piece of land in an integrated tourism complex should develop it to a finished appearance or turn it to good use within four years from the date of putting in land register the owner’s name. No disposition of land shall be made within these four years except by mortgage to finance its development.
If the land is not developed or utilized in the compass of the mentioned period, the Ministry of Housing, Electricity and Water may dispose of it by public auction and reimburse the owner the purchase or the auction price, whichever is lower, but without prejudice to the owner’s right to protest and contest at the competent court of law.
The Ministry of Housing, Electricity and Water may extend the period mentioned in the preceding article by not more than two years if the delay is deemed justifiable on the basis of the recommendation of the Ministry of Tourism, and if the purchaser submitted to Ministry of Tourism an application for extension outlining the grounds for the required extension. The Executive Regulations shall lay down the procedures and the details of such an application and the period of its initiation and submission.
The sale by public auction shall be performed by a government committee to be formed and its terms of reference and modus operandi determined by a decision from the Minister of Housing, Electricity and Water in coordination with the Ministry of Tourism. This Committee shall include technical, financial and legal resources as well as a representative of the Ministry of Tourism.
This system does not prejudice the right of the state to expropriate property for the public interest against the payment of a fair compensation pursuant to laws and rules prevailing in the Sultanate of Oman.
Rights of inheritance, wills and all after-death dispositions of properties subject to this system shall be in accordance to the laws of the country to which the owner belongs. If one year after the death of the owner and the notification of the embassy of such country, no heir has submitted a claim to the estate of the deceased owner, then the Ministry of Tourism shall determine who would manage the property, which shall be devolved to the government of Oman after the elapse of fifteen years, save the right of any legitimate heir to compensation.
The Executive Regulations shall demonstrate the procedures for the submission of applications and claims to inheritance together with supportive documents. The Executive Regulations shall also decide the government unit that should handle the notification, the amount of the property management fees and shall establish the procedures for the execution of all post-death transactions.
A Non-Omani owner of a property for accommodation or investment and first-degree relatives may be granted residence permit. The Executive Regulations shall, after coordination with the parties concerned, establish the procedures and stipulations for granting such residence permits.
The Minister of Tourism shall form a government committee to be entrusted with the task of licensing integrated tourism complexes in accordance with established rules and criteria. The ministerial decision forming the committee shall also determine its mandate and modus operandi.
All dispositions and transactions carried out in respect of tourism complexes prior to the enforcement of this system shall be valid and legally binding.