‘Govt warned against controlling the country’s economic sectors’

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Deficit reaches almost KD 6b due to fall in oil prices

KUWAIT CITY, Jan 7: The State Audit Bureau has warned the government against controlling the economic sectors of the country, especially since it weakens the private sector. It urged the government to bear the responsibility and tackle the shortcomings in the national economy particularly the dependence on a single source of state revenues, reports Al-Qabas daily. In its regular report, the bureau explained that the deficit has reached almost KD 6 billion (precisely KD 5,918,000,000) due to the fall in oil prices.

This has led the government to issue international debt securities. The report called for obligating the Public Investment Authority, as the sovereignty fund, to adopt the international criteria in stating the accounting policies regarding the public reserve and the future generations’ funds in order to enhance transparency.

The bureau stressed the need to amend the specified periods for referring the statements or reports about the invested money to the relevant minister starting from the beginning of the fiscal year in order to facilitate the work of financial bodies and prevent overlapping of reports.

It affirmed the importance of limiting to just one report annually instead of two on the results of the investments of the preceding year. The bureau called for increasing the current period of 30 days for referring the reports to three months in order to give sufficient time for the relevant bodies to prepared audited reports.

Meanwhile, Kuwait Petroleum Corporation (KPC) from now on will be responsible for the disbursement of road allowance for employees working at Al-Khafji joint oil fields, an affiliate of Kuwait Oil Company (KOC). The allowance will be included in the budget of KPC starting from fiscal year 2018/2019, which begins next April, reports Al-Anba daily.

Informed sources disclosed that the allowance will not be part of the budget of Ministry of Oil, and Cabinet has since approved of the ministry’s request to allot KD 4 million for that purpose each year. The same sources noted the ministry used to pay the allowance based on an agreement signed in 1990 to encourage citizens to work at Al-Khafji. He reiterated the value of road allowance ranges from KD 150 to KD 450 per employee, according to occupational status.

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