A survey by the Kuwait Central Statistical Bureau showed the unemployment rate in Kuwait was 2.2 percent during the fiscal year 2016-2017, the same as the previous year.

According to the survey, unemployment amongst male citizens dropped from 1.2 percent in 2015-2016 to only 0.9 percent in 2016-2017.

Meanwhile, the study showed that unemployment amongst female citizens increased to 5.8 percent compared to 4.4 percent in the previous year.

Ministry of Public Works’ Undersecretary Awatif Al-Ghunaim stressed that the ministry is awaiting the Finance Ministry’s approval of its 2018-2019 budget of KD 536 million, which had been requested to help cover the cost of Ministry of Public Works’ projects this year.

Ghunaim added that the requested budget only covers Ministry of Public Works’ projects of maintenance, sewerage, construction and major projects excluding roadwork, which has been put under the jurisdiction of the newly established road authority with a totally separate budget.

Ghunaim said Ministry of Public Works considered cancelling or suspending some projects because the budget allocated by the finance ministry was not enough, although some of these projects are listed in the state’s development plan.

She added that Ministry of Public Works will execute projects depending on the availability of funds and in collaboration and under the supervision of the Central Tenders Committee, the State Audit Bureau and the Finance Ministry.

Mobile trucks

The Ministry of Commerce and Industry set Jan 31, 2018 to start implementing ministerial decision number 693/2017 pertaining regulating the use of mobile trucks for commercial purposes.

But relevant sources said the Ministry of Commerce and Industry is still contacting relevant government bodies to determine the mechanism of licensing these trucks and the locations they would be allowed to operate in.

The sources added that the Ministry of Commerce and Industry sent a letter to the finance ministry’s state property department requesting its view about the places where those trucks would be allowed to operate.

They added that several similar letters were also sent to a number of other government bodies including Kuwait Municipality and Public Authority of Industry.

“The core of operating these trucks lies in allocating certain spots where license owners can operate, and a delay in determining these places will delay the project,” the sources underlined, noting that The Ministry of Commerce and Industry will have to find a transparent system to distribute these trucks’ parking and operation spots.

Notably, Minister of Commerce and Industry Khaled Al-Roudhan issued a ministerial decision last week amending the mobile truck resolution to allow entrepreneurs to run two trucks, and retirees one truck, instead of only one truck per company in the original version.

The amendments also stated that licensees would be allowed to hire four Kuwaitis to operate the truck instead of two, and maintained the total number of non-Kuwaiti workers at two per truck.


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