We are ushering in the year 2023 envisaging moderate growth with major rating agencies like S&P, Moody’s and Fitch upgrading the sovereign credit ratings corroborating the success of Oman’s financial & economic policies and measures and the IMF projecting a decent growth in GDP. The banking system has weathered the recent shocks, supported by substantial liquidity buffers and the continued efforts of the CBO in strengthening regulatory and supervisory frameworks. The sultanate sold its crude oil at an average price of US$94 per barrels during 2022 against US$50 per barrel as budgeted for 2022. With elevated oil prices, increased oil and gas production and higher tax collection, Oman recorded a budget surplus of RO 1.146 bn for the year 2022. The additional financial revenues enabled the government to pay off part of the public debt resulting in the reduction of public debt from RO 20.8bn at the end of 2021 to RO 17.7bn in 2022 thus substantially lowering the Debt to GDP ratio. Oman’s 2023 budget is based on a prudent average oil price of US$55 per barrel after taking into consideration the uncertainty facing global oil markets, global inflation, projected recession and other relevant factors. The Government is committed to support the progress of education and the growth of manufacturing, fisheries, mining, logistics, renewable energy and tourism sectors as part of Oman Vision 2040. The country is well poised to achieve fiscal sustainability and recreate the financial buffers besides focusing on increased development expenditure in the economy towards spurting growth.
In the year 2022, the company has achieved net operating income of RO 10.36 million as compared to RO 10.96 million in the previous year. The company achieved a Net Profit after tax of RO 2.750 million compared to RO 2.564 million for the same period last year. The company’s net installment finance receivables stood at RO 119 million as of 31 December 2022 as against RO 105.56 million last year. The company has made a charge of RO 2.305 million towards estimated credit loss for the year 2022. The non-performing assets coverage including the specific reserve for non-performing assets stands at 464%. The company continues to maintain its No 1 position for the NPL coverage in the industry.
It is the intention of your company to continue the sustainable dividend policy that the company has been following since inception. Your directors have proposed a dividend of 12.25% for the year 2022, after considering the CBO guidelines, comprising 7.25% cash and 5% unsecured compulsorily convertible bonus stock bonds with a face value of RO 0.100 (subject to the approval at the AGM), thus maintaining its track record of paying consistent dividends without interruption since inception. This takes the cumulative dividend paid to shareholders to 478.58% since inception. The unsecured compulsorily convertible bonus bonds will be paid from Company’s retained earnings.
The company’s equity capital stands at RO 30,321,363/- which is well above the regulatory requirement. The company is well capitalised, and the capital adequacy stands at a healthy 33.84%. The company has issued compulsorily convertible bonus stock bonds in the earlier years which are listed. One of the existing convertible bonus stock bonds (listed in 2017) got converted to Equity Shares in May 2022. Another lot of the existing convertible bonus stock bonds (listed in 2018) will be converted to Equity Shares in 2023 ensuing further Capital enhancement.
The world is facing significant economic and geopolitical challenges which adversely affect energy prices and supply chains, leading to high inflation rates, high interest rates and growing global debt risks. Oman is not immune from such challenges which may affect our economy. Despite the recovery in oil prices and economic activities, the financial and economic challenges still persist, Moreover, forecasts of the global economy are unstable, which calls for rationalising spending and committing to the approved allocations in the state’s general budget. The FED has embarked on their most aggressive monetary tightening cycle in decades in response to soaring inflation and Rial Omani being pegged to USD, the rates are expected to remain high at least for a year. Global macroeconomic conditions such as the threat of a worldwide recession, decline in global oil demand, high debt servicing costs, intensified geopolitical tensions, supply chain disruptions, high inflation rates and climate change are other looming risk factors. The behavior of the debt post the deferment period, expected delinquencies due to reduced cash flow at the borrower’s level may continue to reduce the net margins and result in dilution of the NPA coverage.
The Company continues to contribute for social causes as part of its Corporate Social Responsibilities. In line with the corporate objectives during the current year under CSR, the company has contributed towards National Day Celebrations, Sponsorship to cultural & sports events.
We continue to foresee a challenging year ahead. The company is resilient and cautiously optimistic of posting satisfactory performance in 2021. The company is well aware of the current economic scenario and has initiated proactive mitigating measures. The company is fundamentally strong with solid net worth, clean loan book, lowest Non-Performing Loans, high NPA coverage and is in a formidable position to leap as the opportunities unfold. We assure the shareholders that, as outlined in the Report on Corporate Governance and the Management Discussion and Analysis Report by the Chief Executive Officer, the company has adequate internal control systems and processes and has good governance systems in all the areas of management and has the ability to continue as a going concern and has the ability to operate competitively to post satisfactory performance in the coming years. The Board also understands its responsibility for the preparation and fair presentation of the financial statements in accordance with IFRS and the relevant requirements of the Commercial Companies Law 1974 and the Capital Market Authority of the Sultanate of Oman.
As per the regulatory requirement, the company has conducted the Board of Directors’ appraisal for the year 2022 to cover the remaining tenure of the Board, through an independent consultant M/s. Keynote Services LLC and the report is satisfactory.