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Wed 23 Sep 2015 11:27 AM

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Kuwait deficit rises to $3.62bn in five months

Deficit rose after a 10% contribution to the country's sovereign wealth fund, the finance ministry pointed out

Kuwait deficit rises to $3.62bn in five months
Kuwait

Kuwait's budget deficit in the first five months of its fiscal year stood at 1.094 billion dinars ($3.62 billion) after a deduction for the Future Generations Fund, the finance ministry said on Tuesday in a statement carried by Kuwait News Agency.

The deficit from April 1 to August 31 stood at 361.38 million dinars before the 10 percent contribution of 733.50 million dinars to the Future Generations Fund, part of Kuwait's sovereign wealth fund, the statement said.

Finance minister Anas al-Saleh told reporters on September 15 that Kuwait plans to issue bonds in local currency by the end of the year to help bridge its budget deficit.

Kuwait's parliament in July approved a state budget for the current 2015-16 fiscal year, which begins on April 1, that envisages a budget deficit of 8.18 billion dinars because of low oil prices.

However, the actual deficit may not turn out to be nearly as large. The size will depend on oil prices, while Kuwait has in the past often underspent its budget because of bureaucratic red tape and tensions between the cabinet and parliament that have slowed economic projects. This could also limit the deficit.

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