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KUWAIT CITY, Jan 6: According to official figures, the government spending during the first quarter of the current fiscal year for providing housing care to citizens amounted to only 0.02 percent of the total financial appropriations estimated for spending during the year, reports Al-Anba daily. A report issued by the General Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Planning and Development revealed that the program for providing housing care to citizens has a total of six projects, for which KD 458 million were allocated as financial appropriations for the year 2021/2022. However, only KD 82.6 thousand was spent. Regarding the status of the projects during the period from the beginning of April 2021 to the end of June 2021, four of them did not make any progress in their completion rates.
They include – 1. Jaber Al-Ahmad City project – This project is in the delivery phase. No obstacles were recorded in its implementation
2. South Sabah Al-Ahmad project – This project is facing technical obstacles related to modifications. There are also obstacles at the site of implementation.
3. South Saad Al Abdullah project – The completion rate of this project reached 13.3 percent. It faced technical obstacles regarding the extension of the project for the completion of the highway linking the Sixth Ring Road with the Seventh Ring Road, which extends to Jahra Governorate. Also, large tires were blocking the project site.
4. South Abdullah Al Mubarak suburb project – No progress was made in this project
Meanwhile, the Mutlaa Residential City project made progress in the overall completion rate during the first quarter. It faced a technical obstacle related to the project’s delay due to the presence of modifications. The Affordable Housing Project is a new project and it has achieved 37 percent completion rate so far. In another context, the spending on 16 projects related to “provision of high quality health care” amounted to only 4.58 percent of the financial appropriations during the first quarter of the fiscal year. Out of KD 232.36 million approved for the entire fiscal year, KD 10.63 million was spent on these projects. The report described the percentage of spending as a whole as “very weak”.
The report revealed that 99.7 percent of the financial appropriations are allocated to the projects of the program to increase the bed capacity of hospitals. It explained that the implementation position indicates there are four projects in the preparatory phase, and 12 projects in the implementation phase. There are two projects out of the 16 projects for which no budget has been included. In detail, the program to increase hospital bed capacity is concerned with increasing the capacity of health facilities to cope with the population increase, to reduce the waiting periods in hospitals, and for the optimal geographical distribution of health facilities to achieve more convergence in improving health levels for the population of each area.
The program includes 11 projects – 10 construction projects and one developmental project. Credits estimated at KD 221.46 million were allocated to these projects, of which 4.79 percent were spent by the end of the first quarter. The Ministry of Health is working on increasing the hospital bed capacity with seven continuous construction projects, five of which are in the implementation phase, two are in the preparatory phase, and three have made progress on the level of completion during the first quarter. In this regard, there were some obstacles facing the projects, such as an administrative obstacle with the Kuwait Municipality over modifying a project site and handing it over to a project for a new building in Ibn Sina Hospital, as well as the existence of obstacles facing the implementation of three projects.
The “New Al-Sabah Hospital” also faces technical challenges related to the failure to complete the preparation of the technical requirements for the project, in addition to a legislative obstacle related to the lack of laws necessary to implement the project. The new building of the Kuwait Cancer Center faces two technical obstacles, namely the delay of the contractor due to the absence of a consultant, which led to the contractor not completing the structural design approval certificate, and the other related to the termination of the agreement based on the desire of the Ministry of Health regarding new buildings in Adan Hospital and Infectious Diseases Hospital, and a legislative obstacle in terms of the lack of laws necessary to implement the project.
The Ministry of Public Works is participating in two ongoing projects, the first of which is the Children’s Hospital, which is in the preparatory phase, and has not achieved any significant progress in its overall completion rate since the year of the 2019/2020 plan. It appears that there is a technical obstacle facing the project represented by the delay of the consultant in handing over the phases. There is another project in the operational phase, which is the new maternity hospital. It has made progress in its overall completion rate from 8.3 percent to reach 51.4 percent by the end of the first quarter. As for the Public Institution for Social Security, it is participating in an ongoing construction project in the preparatory phase, which is the Kuwait Medical City. However, the project has not made any progress in its overall completion rate since 2018/2019, as it did not exceed four percent due to an administrative obstacle related to the delay of the Kuwait Municipality in removing obstacles and the method for car parking inside the project land.