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WE speak directly to His Excellency the Minister of Finance Fahad Al-Jarallah, who is known to be experienced in investment and financial affairs. This means that he is aware of people’s needs, and also knows the causes of the problems that the public finances suffer from. Therefore, when we speak without flatteries, we are addressing one of the most important financial experts in the country.
Your Excellency the Minister, Kuwait is a plundered country. You know best who has committed and is still committing these crimes against our nation. You know how the deep state has extended its tentacles into all institutions, as it maliciously charts the course of the state’s decisions by surrounding the decision-makers and proposing what suits its interests, even if it leads to provoking popular resentment against the government and the leadership.
This is due to the fact that it is more concerned about accumulation of wealth, and this has a great price that has begun to appear in various institutions, and in society.
There is no doubt that reducing the burden on the state budget requires taking the steps that we talked about previously. We repeat them to your excellency, with the hope that it will perhaps benefit you, and also prevent you from repeating the mistakes of your predecessors.
Loan sharks, members of the deep state, and greedy merchants do not want justice for the Kuwaitis because that would be of no benefit to them. This is why they adopt the slogan of “social justice” in order to mislead. They act mercilessly towards people with limited income, who have been suffering for more than 15 years as a result of non-improvement of their salaries, as inflation has risen to a high extent throughout those years. The argument for support to alleviate the burden of the citizens has become a joke, such as the state subsidizing tea, salmon filet, breaded shrimp, electricity, and water.
Does this waste, which costs the state more than six billion dinars annually, serve the citizens? Or is it merely aimed to benefit the importing companies and merchants? Does subsidized gasoline represent a social justice that benefits the wealthy more than the needy?
Fairness begins with removing the burdens of the borrowing citizens who are suffering, either through physical coercion that restricts them and almost deprives them of air because there are those who refuse to open the state as a window of hope to relieve them of their suffering. There are about 120,000 people who are either imprisoned due to their inability to repay or are facing civil lawsuits under the flimsy pretext of “preserving rights.”
We said in the past and we repeat it today – Loans are a concern that worries about two-thirds of the people in this country. The abuse practiced by creditors towards debtors has reached the heights, and has even become a factor of social demolition.
As for the government, it is well aware that any obstacle that affects the financial cycle and an increase in the number of poor or needy people exacerbate the crises of citizens and negatively affects society.
Your Excellency the Minister, you stated a few days ago that the citizens’ pocket will not be touched. This is true in one case, as there is an administration that can make decisions, and those in charge of it know the correct direction of public finances.
Therefore, the solution begins with increasing the salaries of low-income earners, then working on directing subsidies to those in need, and removing them from the wealthy.
In many countries, there are taxes on wealth and companies, after which it is possible to discuss value-added tax and other taxes that serve society and do not flow into the stomachs of whales of money. Otherwise, we are just plowing in the sea.
By Ahmed Al-Jarallah
Editor-in-Chief, the Arab Times