There are two important elements that are in favor of our government. The first is that the oil price is stable and will remain so. It will be within the range of mid-$70 per barrel for some time to come. The other important element is the absence of Parliament due to the summer break, which will continue until the end of October. Therefore, there is plenty of time to introduce solutions and resolutions to move the economy and launch the process of moving away from oil. This can be done by diversifying the economy away from oil, and emphasizing the role of privatization in creating job opportunities for the new graduates, the numbers of which can exceed 30,000, who are coming into the labor market. The government should act quickly without any excuse of objections or rejections.
It always had the majority on its side, and it can win over, as long as it comes up with genuine practical and implementable long-term plans and goals. Kuwait is full of educated, dedicated, young and experienced professionals who can come up with easy and simple solutions if given the opportunity. The government does not even have to think; it only needs to speak, and seek help to find solutions for the failures in almost every field. We also do not need to look at others and their experiences, as we have enough brains like our older generation that founded and created the first ever sovereign wealth fund or built the first oil refinery joint venture with the private sector. It could create a fully private oil tanker company in the region and with the OPEC countries.
Trading is inherited in our blood, as well as investments. We are ranked highly globally with our investments, diversification, and creativity. The government only has to blink in order to witness the arrival of volunteers to give honest hands in moving this country up the ladder. Of course, our government must be prepared in outlining what it’s priorities are. The first priority has to be to resolve the ongoing budget deficit, and find the most efficient ways to pay it off. It must be completely transparent in order to avoid any future complications or troubles. It should be an easy task to perform and should be acceptable to all, provided it happens with openness, and with the censuses of our economic community. There are other tasks for the government to perform, provided it surrounds itself with local professionals and is ready to perform with an open mind. The same applies to our governing body with some achievement. Is this a wishful dream? Will it come true? Time is available to act, as more oil is not a feasible option.
By Kamel Al-Harami Independent Oil Analyst