Muscat:The Ministry of Commerce and Industry has announced the extension of working hours for the staff dealing with public services during the Ramadan month. The ministry has restored the working hours to eight hours per day from the earlier five hours per day.
This decision was taken to relieve the pressure being witnessed by the ministry due to the numbers of petitioners and people who have official papers to be cleared by the ministry officials.
The announcement of the change in timings was made by Dr Ali bin Masoud Al Sunaidi, Minister of Commerce and Industry. He said that the work would now begin at nine o'clock in the morning and would continue until four in the afternoon, starting this Sunday until the end of Ramadan.
The past few days have seen large crowds of people at the ministry, whose official work was being delayed.
The public had expressed their dismay at the situation caused by the reduction in working hours, with some complainants commenting on staff members constantly arriving late at their work stations. The ministry's decision has come as a quick solution to their complaints, said officials.
Al Sunaidi listened to the concerns of the people who had come to the ministry to follow up on their documents and decided to extend the duration of work to eight hours until the end of the month of Ramadan.
Meanwhile, in another development, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry is planning to launch mandatory electronic services after Ramadan.
The minister had confirmed during the launch of the second package of electronic services that some packages would be mandatory, such as the registration of institutions and trade names. In the future, people who approach the ministry in person for these registration services will not be entertained.
So far, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry has launched two packages of electronic services to facilitate and simplify procedures.
These packages would allow investors to make deals from any location through the devices provided by the Information Technology Authority (ITA) and those placed at various commercial centres.
The second package includes services to renew commercial registration or a home business licence, check the availability of a brand name, book a trade name, renew a trade name, and make queries, in addition to the two supporting services.