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Tuesday , October 20 2020

Areva loss raises ire; VAT assailed – MP asserts mismanagement

KUWAIT CITY, Aug 10: MP Khaled Al-Otaibi has forwarded questions to Finance Minister Anas Al-Saleh about the sale of Kuwait Investment Authority’s (KIA) stake in the French company Areva.

He said KIA had earlier announced its plan to leave Areva and sell its 4.8 percent stake to the French government for 83 million euros; thereby, incurring losses of more than half a million euros since it purchased the stake for 600 million euros.

He pointed out such losses clearly manifest mismanagement of the most important facility — the main reason behind the decline of investments.

He asserted this clearly shows lack of experience in the management of investment funds, as well as lack of transparency and professionalism in wealth management and decision making. He wants to know what prompted KIA to invest in Areva in 2010, if it took the advice of international consulting offices before investing in the company summary of studies done in this regard, payments made to consultants, if intermediaries were hired to process the transaction in 2010, payments made to these intermediaries, their names and nationalities, date of starting negotiations to leave the company, if KIA intends to change its investment map due to warnings by international experts on the possible deterioration of the economies of Europe and other countries which are currently experiencing political tension, and if it intends to reduce investments in certain countries and transfer investments to other countries.

Meanwhile, MP Majed Al-Mutairi rejected the government’s alleged attempt to “infiltrate” into the income of citizens by imposing value added tax (VAT). He claimed the government, from time to time, issues resolutions under the pretext of addressing the budget deficit caused by the oil price decline but it is actually targeting citizens who elected lawmakers.

He pointed out there is no use in being a Parliament member if lawmakers cannot protect the rights of citizens, indicating the pockets of citizens are considered a red line that nobody should cross. He added Al-Saleh promised to submit a new economic reform document, but no concrete step has been taken so far; thus, citizens are worried about the upcoming government reforms.


By Abubakar A. Ibrahim Arab Times Staff

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