Oman’s new framework to enable e-payment services for micro-businesses

By Amirtha P S, Desk Reporter
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The Central Bank of Oman (CBO) has issued the framework for enrolling the micro-business in the Sultanate for using e-payment services, by the Licensed Banks and Payment Service Providers (PSPs).

The new policy for allowing the micro-business to avail e-payments is following CBO’s strategy to boost the e-payment system in the country and to achieve the goal of cashless transactions in society.

With the incorporation of small businesses under the e-payment services, CBO aims to support the national objective of the eCommerce strategy that is being implemented by various government agencies and the private sector.

The framework only applies to “Micro Business Entities” (MBEs) which are small businesses that employ less than ten people and carry out legitimate operations, with consent from the local administration like the single taxi operation, gas delivery, water tankers, home business, street hawkers and small restaurants, etc.

To avail of the e-payment facility MBEs owned by Omani nationals with valid approval from competent government authorities along with ID proof and bank account may approach any bank or PSP.

With the new guidelines, CBO intends to allow e-payment acquiring for those legitimate businesses which are not required to obtain the Commercial Registration of their businesses from the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Investment Promotion (MoCIIP).

As the MoCIIP has permitted a list of activities that can be conducted by the MBEs with permission from the concerned authorities, the directive will enable licensed banks and PSPs to offer e-payment services to them.

The new government directive will allow these entities to enable e-payment facilities to its customers for the goods purchased or services provided using payment cards, mobile transactions, electronic wallet applications from licensed banks and payment service providers.