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Bid to streamline expenditure won’t affect citizens’ income
June 7, 2015, 8:08 am

Just two days after the Government issued a warning through the Minister of Oil and State Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Dr. Ali Al-Omair concerning the possibility of recording deficit in the national budget if the oil price per barrel continues below US$ 77, the Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister of Finance Anas Al-Saleh has allayed fear of Kuwait’s financial status and that of its reserve.

Al-Saleh, despite his reassurance of the financial status of the country, did not hide the fact that he concurs with the Oil Minister’s statement last week when he indicated “the balance status is not positive, as it keeps on falling back due to the low price of oil per barrel”.

The minister explained he has been coordinating with the Parliament Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanim to set a date to present to the members of parliament the financial status of the country, affirming the “confidentiality of the presentation causes the file to be disclosed in a closed session, without referring it to the parliament”. Minister Al-Saleh also revealed government’s arrangements to present detailed information on the financial reserve of the country and its assets, along with the compensations sanctioned by United Nations until 31 March 2015, which marks the end of the 2014/2015 fiscal year.

Al-Saleh pointed out that the financial balance experiences fallback that needs to be addressed by streamlining expenditure (economizing) to reduce financial wastage while directing expenditure toward capital projects and investments without it affecting the citizen’s income. He also said the spending and capital of the current government has increased by approximately 13 percent.

Meanwhile, sources from the economy circles expect the actual deficit will materialize in 2016/2017 national budget and not the new budget of 2015/2016, if the oil price per barrel drops to US$ 55. The sources added “the value increase of US dollar against the Kuwaiti dinar will save about a billion dinar in the new budget to minimize negative effects of the low oil price”.

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