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Sun 15 Nov 2009 01:17 PM

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Kuwait's population stable as expats hit by job losses

Around 3.4m living in Gulf state, private sector takes brunt of fall in worker numbers.

Kuwait's population remained stable at around 3.4 million at the end of June, latest figures show, as the impact of the global recession forced some expat workers to leave the country.

According to a report by the National Bank of Kuwait, the population figure was very similar to that at the end of 2008.

Of the total, Kuwaiti nationals numbered 1.1 million, making up 32 percent, and foreign residents accoungted for 2.3 million, it said, quoting figures of the Public Authority for Civil Information (PACI).

The number of Kuwaiti nationals rose by roughly 15,000, but non-Kuwaitis fell by around 14,000, as the global financial crisis continued in the Gulf state, KUNA News Agency reported.

Despite this drop, the number of non-Kuwaitis is still 50,000, or two percent, higher than the figure reported two years ago, the report showed.

The number of workers in Kuwait totalled 1.7 million late June, down 13,000, or 2.6 percent, on the first half of 2009, it added.

The drop mainly involved foreign residents as, at the same time, the number of Kuwaiti workers edged up by 10,000.

The fall in the number of workers was mainly in the private sector, while the number went up by in the public sector.

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