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Kuwait to spend $16.6 bln on projects next year

The Kuwaiti cabinet has allocated 16.6 billion dollars for capital spending in the next fiscal year starting April 1 as part of a four-year development plan, a government statement said on Monday. Skip related content

The allocations will be spent on development projects in the oil-rich Gulf state during the fiscal year that runs until March 31, 2011, said the statement that was issued after the cabinet’s weekly meeting.

It did not name the projects but said five public shareholding companies would be established to implement them, and one of the projects is for power generation.

Adel al-Wugayan, secretary general of the higher planning council which prepared the plan told Al-Qabas daily on Monday that 7.7 billion dollars will be spent on oil projects and 8.9 billion dollars on non-oil projects.

A further 7.7 billion dollars will be contributed by the private sector during the coming fiscal year, Wugayan added.

The Kuwaiti parliament last month gave its initial approval to the emirate’s four-year plan, which stipulates spending 129 billion dollars on development projects.

The plan, the first since 1986, includes such mega projects as developing a new business hub called Silk City estimated to cost 77 billion dollars, a major container harbour and a 25-kilometre (16-mile) causeway.

It also includes a railway and metro system, new cities and additional spending on infrastructure, particularly in the health and education sectors.

The ultimate goal of the plan, which runs until fiscal year 2013/2014, is to turn Kuwait into a regional trade and financial centre.

Kuwait has amassed huge foreign assets in the past decade on the back of high oil prices. The value of these assets is estimated at about 230 billion dollars.

Kuwait, which says it holds 10 percent of global crude reserves, pumps about 2.2 million barrels per day.


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