Legislator reviews options on loans, debts owed by Kuwaitis

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KUWAIT CITY, Jan 8: MP Alyaa Al- Khalid has no intention to vote for the bill on writing off the citizens’ loans, because it violates the principle of equality stipulated in the Constitution. The lawmaker suggested that instead of writing off the loans; radical steps must be taken to eliminate the factors which prompted almost one third of the Kuwaitis to obtain loans, solve the problems of those who cannot pay their loans, get rid of the bad administration and combat corruption.

She said most citizens are forced to take loans for their treatment abroad due to failure to obtain overseas treatment support, as well as for the education of their children and construction of their houses. She added the budget for writing off loans is huge — about KD 14 billion. She wondered: Where will we get such a huge amount if the problem surfaces every three or four years?

On the other hand, MP Faisal Al-Kandari clarified the bill mandates the government to ‘purchase’ the loans by cutting the KD120 monthly cost of living allowance, not writing off the loans. He said the government will purchase the loans from the banks, which have been receiving huge financial support from the State for years. He added there is no need to study the bill further, considering the total cost does not exceed KD2 billion; while emphasizing that the KD14 billion estimated cost is exaggerated. He wondered about the request of the government for more time to study the proposal, considering it did not conduct studies on granting huge amounts and loans to other countries, and it did not take a lot of time in granting millions of Kuwaiti dinars to the banks during the economic crisis in 2008. He called on his colleagues to vote in favor of important bills in the session slated for Tuesday, such as the loans purchase, retirees and refunding loan interests collected illegally by some banks.

Meanwhile, Al-Kandari considers the statement of His Highness the Prime Minister that his recent meeting with the MPs could be the last a threat to dissolve the Assembly. He said this does not threaten the lawmakers who entered the Assembly through the citizens’ votes. He concluded that the upcoming session could be a turning point, as it will reveal whether the lawmakers are loyal to the nation or they are keen on serving personal interests.

On the other hand, MP Alyaa Al- Khalid has submitted a bill on the establishment of a public authority for civil registry and nationality affairs to issue documents for citizens like the birth and death certificates, in addition to addressing nationality issues. She said the authority shall keep a file for every citizen, including his birth certificate, civil identification and nationality cards, and education and health records. She also unveiled her plan to submit a bill on protecting the digital data of the State. She believes this is an important bill since the country has no clear definition of digital data or classification of information — public, confidential and sovereign. She said the bill will specify the way of saving State information and those who can access it.

Moreover, MP Osama Al-Zaid forwarded queries to Minister of Oil Bader Al-Mullah about the announcement of Kuwait Petrochemical Industries Company (KIPIC) regarding the aromatics project at Zour Petrochemical Complex. He wants to know the total cost of the project, estimated profits, if Kuwait National Petroleum Corporation (KNPC) will shoulder the whole capital of the project, if there will be an international or local partner, and if other petrochemical industries with higher gains have been considered to replace the aromatics project. By Saeed Mahmoud Saleh Arab Times Staff

This news has been read 10737 times!

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