Vodafone is now formerly recognised as the third mobile operator in Oman. A recent royal decree has mean that the company has obtained a first-class license to establish and operate public telecommunications services in the Sultanate.
Strictly speaking, as a number of local press reports have pointed out, Oman has approved the licencing of Oman Future Telecommunications (OFT) as the country’s third mobile operator. Shareholders of OFT include a number of Omani institutions such as government pensions and investment funds, as well as a group of private investors.
The new provider will, however, launch using the Vodafone brand, based on a strategic partnership with the global powerhouse, which operates mobile and fixed networks in 21 countries and partners with mobile networks in 48 more.
In fact Vodafone Group and OFT announced the strategic partnership agreement in late 2019 as part of Vodafone’s Partner Markets programme.
The non-equity agreement said that the companies would work together to roll out a new mobile network and develop a number of new services using the Vodafone brand in Oman to drive the next stage in the development of the country’s telecommunications market. At the time commercial launch was planned for the second half of 2020.
The launch of Vodafone Oman is undoubtedly a significant development, bringing greater competition to a market where operators Ooredoo and Omantel currently share about 5.7 million connections. The country has a population estimated at just over five million.