Prior to becoming first in line to succession of the sultanate, the Oxford-educated 30-year-old was Oman’s minister for culture, sports and the youth under his father, who has been in power since early last year following the death of his cousin and long-term ruler Sultan Qaboos Bin Said. Sultan Qaboos left no heir apparent nor designated a successor during his lifetime, instead his preferred successor was revealed after his death in a sealed envelope.
Before his ministerial role, Bin Haitham had served at the Omani Embassy in London since 2018, having joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 2013.
As part of the new Basic Law of the State, the process of succession will be more stable. The new legislation also includes more emphasis on the separation of powers and more rights and freedoms for Omani citizens.
According to the Times of Oman the power shall be transferred “from the Sultan to his eldest son and then to the eldest son of the Heir Apparent assuming the succession.”
READ: Oman Sultan to appoint first-ever crown prince
“In case of the death of the eldest son of the Sultan before assuming power, the rule shall transfer power to the eldest son of the Heir Apparent even if he has brothers,” the article explained.
Under Oman’s constitution, the sultan should be a member of the royal family, as well as “Muslim, mature, rational and the legitimate son of Omani Muslim parents”.
News of the reformed and stable succession process will likely be welcomed by foreign investors. Ubaldo Tripoli, partner at consulting firm Kearney believes: “The amendment to the constitution by His Majesty Sultan Haitham Bin Tareq, and the official appointment of Sayyid Theyazin bin Haitham al Said, as Crown Prince, mark the start of a new growth era for the Sultanate.”