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Home > Who Are We >  Authority Directorates
Authority Directorates
Economics and Financial Affairs

The Economics and Financial Affairs section is responsible for setting, monitoring and ensuring compliance with RPI-X type price controls under which monopoly entities now operate. The section is also involved in the development and approval of Bulk Supply Tariffs, connection and use of system charges, and the future implementation of cost reflective tariffs (i.e. consumer tariffs for which no subsidy is provided). The section is responsible for the calculation of annual electricity subsidy in accordance with Article (18) of the Sector Law. Additional responsibilities include contributing to proposals for rural area electrification, annual reviews of the scope for further market liberalization, and other economic and financial matters.

Hassan Taqi – Director of Economics and Financial Affairs

Hassan joined the Authority in April 2006 as a Regulatory Economist, having previously worked for the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority. In 2009, Hassan was appointed Senior Economist and in 2011 Director of Economic and Financial Affairs.
Hassan holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from the University of Nottingham and an MSc. in Economic Regulation and Competition from City University, London.

Licensing and Legal Affairs

The Licensing and Legal Affairs section is responsible for monitoring the compliance of licensees and exemption holders with the terms of their licenses and exemptions and other statutory obligations. The section is also tasked with ensuring that the Authority complies with all its statutory obligations. The section works to establish clear channels of communication with various ministries and Government bodies to ensure the Authority can provide advice to licence holders with regard to statutory obligations such as environmental matters, health and safety, and Omanisation. The section provides in-house legal opinions on various matters and advises Members when recourse to external legal advice is required". The Authority has a medium term staffing compliment of around 25, most of which are professional staff. The Authority will expand and grow in line with the implementation of the new electricity market arrangements.

Abdulwahhab Al Hinai - Director of Licensing and Legal Affairs

Has more than 10 years of experience in utility regulation combined with years of legal practice. He has extensive experience in a number of regulatory areas including restructuring and liberalization of utility sectors and competition in such sectors. He worked on setting and implementing regulatory and licensing frameworks and participated in various regulatory audits and investigations. He represents the Authority in a number of committees and task teams handling a wide range of policy, legal and regulatory matters.

Abdulwahhab holds a Masters degree from King’s College London focusing on Competition and Regulation and an MBA from the University of Strathclyde.

Technical Affairs

The Technical Directorate is responsible for approving, monitoring and ensuring compliance with the technical standards applicable to the sector. The Directorate has significant influence on the way the technical standards of the sector develop and are applied. The Directorate represents the Authority on Grid Code and Distribution Code review panels and is responsible for ensuring that entities operating in the sector act in accordance with the terms of relevant connection agreements and industry codes. The Directorate has an important role in determining disputes of a technical nature between sector entities and between entities and their customers.

Ibrahim Mohamed Al Harthi – Director of Technical Affairs

Graduated from California State University, Sacramento in 1998 with a BSc in Electrical and Electronics Engineering specialized in Power. Started career in the Royal Oman Police in the Directorate General of Projects and Maintenance as an Electrical Engineer working in operation, and in projects. In 2007 joined the Authority for Electricity Regulation as a Regulatory Engineer. became a Senior Regulatory Engineer in 2008 and promoted to the Deputy Director in 2011. Experience cover a wide range of areas in Power System mainly in Transmission and Distribution. Main experience include Health and Safety issues, power system performance, technical investigation, Audits, review of system expansion plans and capital expenditure requirements, technical standards, etc. In 2013 obtained an MSc in Electrical Power Systems from the University of Manchester. Became the Director of Technical Regulation in March 2016 with responsibility for the Technical Regulation of the electricity sector in Oman.

Customer Affairs

The Customer Affairs section is responsible for ensuring the interests of consumers are afforded appropriate priority and consideration in the Authority’s decisions. The section liaises with customers wishing to register complaints about service providers and who seek advice on electricity related matters. The section contributes to reviews of electricity tariffs and is tasked with approving and monitoring measures implemented by licensed suppliers and licensed distributors (including the Rural Areas Electricity Company SAOC) concerning guaranteed and overall standards of performance".

The section overses the implementation of codes of practice for:

Consumer late payments

Treatment of consumers with special needs

Promoting the efficient use of electricity

Ian Benfield – Director of Customer Affairs

Ian Benfield is the Authority’s Director of Customer Affairs, a position he has held since January 2011. Ian’s responsibilities at the AER include raising awareness of customers’ rights; monitoring and enhancing the levels of service provided by Oman’s licensed distribution and supply companies, covering meter reading and billing accuracy and the provision of an electricity supply; and the resolution of customer complaints where mutual agreement has not been reached between the customer and his electricity distribution and supply company.

Ian has 26 years’ experience in energy sector regulation. This includes: 5 years with the UK gas regulatory authority (Ofgas) with responsibility for customer service, unbundling and network access arrangements; 9 years with Eastern Electricity, the UK’s largest electricity distribution and supply company; and 7 years with IPA Energy Consulting, where he led and contributed to a range of advisory projects in the UK and Ireland, Middle East, Eastern Europe, Africa and India.