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Demographics rules agenda

KUWAIT CITY, Oct 14: The parliamentary Human Resources Development Committee on Wednesday met the representatives of 15 public institutions and ministries in order to listen to their views on the Demographic Imbalance Bill, says Rapporteur MP Osama Al-Shaheen.

Minister of Social Affairs and State Minister for Economic Affairs Mariam Al-Aqeel, Minister of Commerce and Industry Khaled Al-Roudhan, and Minister of Public Works Rana Al-Fares were among those who attended the meeting. Al-Shaheen said the committee is keen on hearing the opinions of different public institutions, especially after the government voted against the bill in its first reading.

While confirming that the committee received the recommendations of several MPs, Al-Shaheen urged all concerned parties and other MPs to submit their comments and suggestions before the committee’s meeting on Monday for the completion of its report on the bill. He also asked the National Assembly Office to include the bill in the agenda of the session slated for Tuesday or earlier.

In another development, MP Muhammad Al-Dallal revealed he was surprised when the parliamentary Financial and Economic Affairs Committee contradicted the position of the Assembly regarding the proposal to support the small and medium enterprises (SMEs). He said majority of the MPs voted in favor of removing the phrase ‘other clients’ from the bill during the last session, but the committee seems to be heading towards another direction. He found out that the committee intends to replace the term ‘small and medium enterprises’ with ‘businesses affected by coronavirus’, in addition to the cancellation of the maximum loan amount – KD 250,000. He argued these amendments will change the purpose of the bill from supporting SMEs only to extending support for others. He added he forwarded a suggestion to the committee some days ago to reduce the budget allocated for the bill from KD 3 billion to KD 2.5 billion, but the committee ignored his proposition

By Saeed Mahmoud Saleh Arab Times Staff

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