The Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries Wealth is the authority responsible for the development of aquaculture in Oman and for the management of the entire fisheries sector. It coordinates all relevant issues with other ministries and government departments with a role in the development of the fisheries and aquaculture sector. The different institutions that work under this Ministry are:
· The Directorate General of Fisheries Development. This Directorate established in 2000 the Aquaculture Development Department and thus following the importance that the sector of aquaculture has gained recently (increase of the level of interest, as well as in the number of applications, received from the private sector regarding investment in aquaculture). Investment proposals are received by the Department for technical evaluation.
· The General Directorate of Fisheries Research (GDFR), the Marine Sciences and Fisheries Centre, Fish Quality Control Centre (ensure the quality of fish products, make sure that companies comply with existing hygienic and quality assurance norms and regulations including the application of an appropriate HACCP system), the Aquaculture Centre (conducts scientific research dealing with all aspects of marine and freshwater aquaculture, provides scientific and technical advice on aquaculture and related topics), the Statistics and Fisheries Information Department and the Fisheries Research Centre.
· The General Directorate of Administrative and Financial Affairs.
· The Directorate General of Fisheries in Dhofar Governorate.
· The Directorate General of Fisheries in the Eastern Province.
· The Directorate General of Fisheries in the Batinah Region.
· The Department of Fisheries in Musandam Governorate.
· The Department of Fisheries, Central Region.
· The Department of Public Relations and Media develop the media plans in order to highlight the role and achievements of the Ministry and the importance of fisheries in the development of the national economy by showing the areas of investment in this sector, both internally and externally. The media programmers and audio-visual materials necessary to implement the activities of the Ministry are also prepared and produced by this department.
· The Department of International Cooperation.
The Government is the ultimate authority when taking any decisions related to the development of the fisheries sector through consultation with the Senate committees. The structure of management committees in each of the coastal towns are chaired by the “wali” (local Governor) and have the following members: a Shura council member, a representative of the fishing community and a representative of the Ministry.
The Aquaculture Committee, which is responsible for the evaluation of applications received from the private sector, and chaired by the Minister of the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries Wealth is very active. The Committee is made up of representatives from the Ministry itself, the Ministry of Environment and Climate Affairs, the Ministry of Housing, the Ministry of commerce and Industry and the Ministry of Transport and Telecommunications. Other areas of responsibility include the determination of appropriate sites for each application, and monitoring the development of
the investment projects. There are three main agencies that have policy input into fisheries and marine management.
· The Ministry of Regional Municipalities and Environment.
· The Ministry of Communications, Directorate General of Ports and Maritime Affairs, which is responsible for maritime pollution and response. It is assigned to regulate navigation and maritime transport activities in the maritime areas under the sovereignty and authority of the Sultanate of Oman and control the ships flying the flag of Oman, wherever they are, in accordance with the Maritime Law of Oman issued by Royal Decree No. (35/81) and the Law for Regulation of Navigation in the Omani Territorial Waters issued by the Royal Decree No. (98/81), as well as to examine the need for joining the International and Regional Maritime Conventions, Treaties and Codes and to implement the Maritime Conventions the Sultanate of Oman is already a party to. The Directorate also administers compliance with the requirements of the Safety of Life at Sea and Protection of Maritime Environment from pollution as well as Ships and Ports Security Requirements. In addition, it investigates the maritime accidents occurring in the Omani Territorial Sea, issues Navigational Warnings to all Craft and Seagoing Units and exercising the State Port Control for foreign ships. Moreover, it maintains the link between the Government of the Sultanate and the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and issues Ships Registration Certificates, Navigational Licences and Seaman’s Documents as required.
Sultan Qaboos University, College of Fisheries, which not only runs degree programs for fisheries managers and scientists, but also undertakes fisheries research. (FAO, 2013)