KUWAIT: Finance Ministry’s Undersecretary Khalifa Hamada said that a study about subsidy reform was still in progress pending referral to the government. “The study is being done to ensure continuation of the state’s spending capabilities,” he underlined. Hamada added that the study recommended lifting fuel subsidies first, then gradually lifting electricity, water and other subsidies. “The study began in 2013 and officially started by lifting diesel and kerosene subsidies,” he noted, pointing out that the decision will be made by the Cabinet and not the finance ministry alone. Hamada expected the government to save around KD 0.75 to 1 billion after putting the new fuel prices in effect and stressed that the new prices would be applicable for both citizens and expatriates.
Responding to news stories about taxing Kuwaiti companies’ profits, observers excluded the likelihood of imposing the taxes this year and said that the new tax system would be put into practice after rationalizing subsidies and preparing the needed infrastructure to do so by the beginning of next year.
Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA) has decided to sell its share in Kuwait Public Transportation Company (KPTC), the Touristic Enterprises Company (TEC), Kuwait Clearing Company and Kuwait Livestock Trading and Transport Company (KLTT) this month. The authority recently received the four companies’ strategic plans for 2016-2020 to study them to determine the financial support needed for each and decide on privatizing them. Notably, the investment authority had noticed that one of the four companies had already used up 75 percent of its capital and would eventually face problems on renewing its licenses with the commerce ministry.
The Public Authority for Civil Aviation has invited relevant companies to file their bids to design and construct a new runway at Kuwait International Airport, setting Feb 7 as a deadline to submit their financial and technical offers. Notably, besides building the runway, the tender includes renovating and expanding the airport’s western wing.
MP Abdullah Al-Turaiji yesterday inquired from Deputy Prime Minister and Interior Minister Sheikh Mohammad Al-Khaled Al-Sabah about the veracity of information mentioned by Major General Mazen Al-Jarrah concerning selling Kuwaiti citizenships for KD 11,000. In his inquiry, Turaiji asked the minister to provide him with details about the case including the names of the suspects in addition to a full census with the numbers of citizens and expatriates and a report on how citizens could register non-Kuwaitis as their children and grant them citizenship.
By A Saleh