Challenges Faced by SMEs in Oman

  • Nithya Ramachandran Faculty, Accounting and Finance Section, Department of Business Studies, IBRA College for Technology, Sultanate of Oman
  • Hanan Mohammed Ali AL Yahmadi Accounting and Finance Section, Department of Business Studies, IBRA College or Technology, Sultanate of Oman
Keywords: SMEs, access to finance, challenges faced by SMEs, business performance, training, entrepreneurial culture


SMEs play a significant role in income generation, labour absorption, poverty alleviation and contribution to gross domestic product. The significant challenges faced by them are Lack of basic business knowledge, Lack of market knowledge and information, Lack of adequate finance, complicated procedures and delay in loan disbursement, Limited network, experience and expertise, Reluctant in using modern technology. The study objectives are: to identify the obstacles faced by SMEs in Oman, to understand the difficulties encountered in accessing finance by SMEs in Oman and to study the relationship between the availability of funding and performance of SMEs. The required data were collected using structured Questionnaire from 102 respondents' selected using simple random sampling method. The results show that 47.1% and 37.2% of the respondents felt that gender and age are not an obstacle. Around 54 respondents have ranked that their funds were used for their business while loans from commercial banks were listed as number 2 for accessing finance by 35 respondents. Out 22 respondents who have applied for a bank loan, 13 respondents have faced difficulties in obtaining it. Poor business performance has been ranked number 1, followed by inadequate business planning as a reason for the failure of a bank loan. SMEs need adequate training, finance, and teaching entrepreneurial culture among students.

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