Kuwait: MPs express concern over oil prices decline
Wednesday, 13 June 2012 | 11:30
Following Iran’s criticism that Kuwait, along with Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has contributed to declining oil prices by over-pumping, legislators expressed concern over the effect that price decline will have on the national budget, calling for curbing spending in the public sector.
“The drop in oil prices should lead the Cabinet and parliament to chart out a five-year plan that achieves balance between the expected oil prices and projected spending rates, especially salaries,” said MP Ahmad Lari who asked State Audit Bureau to unify the pay scale in the public sector.
Likewise, MP Abdurrahman Al-Anjari urged the government to draw up ‘long and short term plans’ to deal with repercussions of the drop in oil prices,” reiterating the importance of “finding multiple sources of income.” Meanwhile, MP Dr Ali Al-Omair warned that that an imbalance in the state budget created by oil prices reduction “will directly affect the execution of development projects,” calling for more focus to be placed on investment spending as part of ‘serious efforts’ to diversify sources of income.
In other news, MP Marzouq Al-Ghanim urged Minister of Education and Minister of Higher Education Dr Nayef Al-Hajraf to tackle “a series of violations” committed at the Public Authority for Applied Education and Training (PAAEET). The lawmaker claimed to be in possession of documents that ‘prove suspected forgery,’ including a case in which unnamed PAAET officials allegedly lobbied to improve a graduate’s GPA (Grade Point Average) five years after his graduation.
Meanwhile, MP Nabeel Al-Fadhl asked Parliament Speaker Ahmad Al-Saadoun to take punitive measures, as per the internal regulations of the National Assembly, against “[MPs] who leak information from parliamentary investigation committees.” Al-Fadhl was referring to the incident where reports about cash deposits probe was published in the local press. Separately, MP Dr Waleed Al-Tabtabaei warned Interior Minister Sheikh Ahmad Al-Hmoud Al-Sabah of ‘overconfidence’ regarding his chances of surviving a grilling motion filed by MP Mohammad Al-Juwaihel.
“While the interpellation motion has not earned the majority bloc’s approval, [minister Al-Hmoud] should not enter the debate with full confidence,” Al-Tabtabaei explained. In the meantime, Al-Tabtabaei refused to comment on news that a public demonstration was planned in protest against his derogatory remarks on Kuwait’s flag not being hoisted during the upcoming London Olympics as a result of the ban against the country’s participation in Olympics competitions.
Source: Kuwait Times
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