Maqbool Ali Sultan, Oman's Minister of Commerce and Industry on Thursday announced the government will establish an investment fund with a capital of RO 150 million (US$390 million) with a 60% (RO 90 million ) participation by the government and 40% (RO 60 million) by the private sector and pension funds to help the local securities market. Sultan had announced in a press conference last moth that the government is mulling over establishing a fund to act as market maker. The Ministry of Commerce and Industry took the initiative and invited some financial and banking institutions to contribute to the capital of the fund that aims at striking balance in the securities market in the Sultanate through investment in securities. The fund will be managed by a professional management on commercial basis to provide protection from high undue volatility in the securities markets. It will buy the securities of index listed companies that the management sees their prices are appropriate and sell the securities when prices rise to provide liquidity for market participants and gains to the fund. The government hopes the establishment of the fund would restore confidence in the investment environment through policies that ensure continued success and development of the securities market as an importance instruments of the financial sector which is the linchpin of the economic development process.