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Comment on the merit of the paper which is arguing for a separate HRM model for Oman? It is essential to have a unique HRM model specialized for Oman due to few important reasons. The first reason is the cultural influence and there is relationship between the HRM and the social principles, values, ethics and rules. Second, the cultural aspects must be respected when considering about HR philosophy. Nonetheless, the economic conditions are greatly important as there is a strong link between the economic conditions and the HR policy. At the end, I can briefly say that there must be a special and unique HRM model for Oman due to the special conditions that made this country a different case.

2. Do you think (based on the argument raised in the paper) a distinct HRM Model for the Saudi Arabia can be advocated? If yes, how and why? What should be its constituents and why? How it will be different from the Western Model? I believe it is perfect idea to have a distinct HRM model for Saudi Arabia. I presume this can achieve a lot for the good of the Saudi market. The suggested HRM for Saudi must put some items into consideration such as the culture, institutions, and industry sector.

When we consider the culture, the HRM model must be suitable for the common values, norms of behavior, customs, influence of pressure groups ,assumptions that shape managers’ perceptions, insights and mindsets, management style, meaning of work and values, personal dispositions, attitudes and manners, approaches to cultural diversity, match to the organization culture. Regarding institutions, the HRM model must cope with following institutions; National labor laws, trade unions, politics, educational and vocational training set-up, labor market, professional bodies, international institutions, industry by itself, employers’ federation, consulting organizations, placement organizations, trade bodies, government institutions, local authorities, voluntary bodies.

In addition to considering the institutions, the HRM model must coordinate with the following industrial sectors; Common strategies, business logic and goals, regulations and standards,sector-specific knowledge, informal and formal benchmarking, cross-sector co-operation, common developments in business operations, labor or skill requirements, merger activity, workforce mobility, capital mobility. At the end, The HRM for the Saudi market should be different from the Western market in variety of ways since it must cope with the Saudi culture, and economic and political conditions.

3. Mellahi and Budhwar (2006) and many others are of the view that there is no such thing as a Middle Eastern HRM model and the current forces shaping HRM in this region will lead to more divergence than convergence between and within these countries (GCC and Middle East) in the foreseeable future, Comment. The Middle East region is a conservative cultural and religious area that grew at only half the rate of other developing countries during the 1990s. A number of factors such as structural imbalances, the so-called ‘curse of natural-culture and religious conflicts, are highlighted for the slow economic development in the Middle East.

Similarly, Abed (2003) identifies five main causes holding back the economic growth of the Middle East i.e. lagging political reforms, dominant public sector; underdeveloped financial markets; high trade restrictiveness and inappropriate exchange regimes. apart from these , some of the others factors include the lack of integration into the global economy; growing unemployment rates; closed economies, over-dominance on the oil sector; lack of privatization and the weakness of local entrepreneurial cultures. So far, most countries in the Middle Eastern region seem concentration on the development of their human resources (HR). The oil-producing countries in the GCC region want to reduce their dependence on the oil sector and develop other sectors such as manufacturing, agriculture or services, and all of these need skilled HR.

And on the other hand, the non-oil-producing countries of the region already rely on efficient human resources. In conclusion, there is need for more research for understanding the dynamics of a distinct Omani HRM model and the learning gained will surely contribute to enrich the people management function and its role in achieving organizational performance and excellence in Oman.

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