Kuwait Fiscal Deficit Falls By 19% To $16bn For 2017-18

Kuwait’s dysfunctional politics continues to stymie economic diversification whilst yet another cabinet reshuffle looms. Oil price gains are helping reduce the budget deficit, but non-oil revenues account for barely 10% of the total.

Oil price gains enabled Kuwait to secure a 19.4% year-on-year real terms fall in its budget deficit for the year to 31 March 2018. The Ministry of Finance this week announced that the deficit fell from $19.5bn to $16bn. Predictably the deficit was much smaller than the $26.1bn laid out in the original 2017-18 budget law which underestimated oil prices and overestimated Kuwait’s capacity to implement planned investment ( MEES, 16 June 2017 ).

The final deficit of $16bn includes the mandatory allocation of 10% of total budget revenue to the Reserve Fund for Future Generations (RFFG), which is managed by the Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA), the emirate’s sovereign wealth fund.


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