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Kuwait Appoints Fahd Al-Jarallah As Finance Minister

Kuwait on Sunday appointed Fahd Abdulaziz Al-Jarallah as finance minister, the state news agency said, following the resignation of his predecessor in July.

Jarallah takes over from Manaf Abdulaziz Al Hajri who was in the role only since April this year. Oil Minister Saad Al Barrak had been acting finance minister after he resigned.

Appointed as assistant undersecretary at the Ministry of Finance in August, Jarallah is a businessman who has served on the boards of the Commercial Bank of Kuwait and Noor Financial Investment Company.

Kuwait has among the world's largest oil reserves and strong fiscal and external balance sheets, but political bickering and institutional gridlock have hampered investment and reforms aimed at reducing its heavy reliance on oil revenues.

Among key reforms that have faced delays is a public debt law that would allow Kuwait to borrow from international markets, but which has faced opposition from members of parliament.

The government requires parliamentary approval for proposed reforms.

Growth in Kuwait is expected to significantly slow this year on the back of lower oil prices and cuts to oil production, and its budget for fiscal year 2023/24, approved last month, foresees a budget deficit of $22 billion.

Last month the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said risks to its outlook remained substantial in part due to the absence of necessary fiscal reforms, and GDP growth is seen slowing to just 0.1% this year after 8.2% growth in 2022.


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