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Finance Minister urges parliament to endorse bond issuance bill
February 4, 2018, 9:08 am

Kuwait Finance Minister Dr. Nayef Al-Hajraf said Saturday parliament failure to approve the bond issuance bill would mean the State general reserve would be consumed to address budget deficits.

The State general reserve is exposed to risk because it is constantly used to address financial deficits, Al-Hajraf said in an interview with Al-Rai TV channel.

He underlined the importance of safeguarding Kuwait's financial system, which was based on the general reserve. "Approving the bonds bill does not mean the government will issue bonds tomorrow," said Al-Hajraf, who noted that "entering international stock markets is studied carefully."

Al-Hajraf said there should be a good governance and a wise administration to manage the bond issuance. The government tabled a draft law to finance committee at parliament to seek funding from local and international markets, he said, as well as increasing the debt ceiling to KD 25 billion (USD 83 billion) with a 30 year lending period.

The draft law was approved by the finance committee and is now awaiting the house vote. "The objective behind the bond issuance bill is to maintain the state financial condition and economic sustainability," said Al-Hajraf, who warned Kuwait suffered from "real challenges and structural problems which should be addressed rapidly before they worsen."

Al-Hajraf, meanwhile, said the government would soon launch the national program for economic and financial sustainability, in parallel with financial reforms which aimed at directing the subsidies to the people who deserve them. This program, he added, aimed at further activating private sector's role and the development of non-oil sectors.

Source: KUNA

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