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Shuwaikh Free Zone is no longer ‘free’

Municipality to decide future of area

KUWAIT CITY, Sept 20: The recent decision of Cabinet to render Shuwaikh Free Zone ‘no longer free’ implies the area will be subjected to regular planning like all other Kuwaiti areas – in terms of applicable laws of Kuwait Municipality, Ministry of Public Works, Public Authority for Civil Information (PACI) and other official bodies, reports Al-Qabas daily quoting informed sources.

As per legal procedures, Kuwait Municipality is supposed to send a request to the Municipal Council, and the latter will issue a decision to cancel the description of the aforementioned area as free zone, and then assign the supervision of the area to the Ministry of Finance, sources explained.

They also said the future of the area can be decided by Kuwait Municipality and the Department of State Properties in the Ministry of Finance by re-planning its activities based on investment and commercial regulations but the idea of specifying an authority to manage rent procedures for investors could be an obstacle to implementation of the above-stated option.

They do not expect continuance of industrial projects in the area upon cancellation of its description as a free zone, because such a decision requires the approval of the Environment Protection Agency.

They also said Kuwait Bay is highly polluted due to industrial waste and related violations. They indicated another option to render the area to Kuwait Ports Authority to use for its distinct development projects, which includes rehabilitation of Shuwaikh Port and raising its capacity.

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