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Kuwait_map_527x286px Kuwait+flag Emir+Sheikh+Sabah+al-Ahmad+al-Jaber+al-Sabah
Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah

Kuwait country datafile
Country overview
Government contacts

Country data

Iran 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012f 2013f 2014f
Nominal GDP ($bn) 147.4 106 119.9 160.7 184.5 185.3 185.3
GDP per capita ($) 42,824 30,410 33,481 43.638 48.761 47.639 46.342
Real GDP growth (annual change, %) 2.5 -7.1 -2.4 6.3 6.2 0.8 2.6
Government revenue (% of GDP) 60.2 69.0 67.6 70.8 70.1 69.5 68.6
Government total expenditure (% of GDP) 40.4 42.2 43.1 37.5 36.0 40.5 43.4
Total government debt (gross, % of GDP) 9.5 11.0 10.9 8.2 6.4 5.3 5.1
Current account balance (% of GDP) 40.9 26.7 30.8 41.8 43.2 38.8 37.4
Value of oil imports 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Value of oil exports 82.6 48.9 61.8 96.7* 105.9 100.7 96.9
Inflation (%) 6.3 4.6 4.5 4.9 3.2 2.7 3.4
Click to see full economic data (2005 - 2018 forecast)
Source: International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook Database; Last updated: June 2013; *=Estimate

Doing business in...

Doing Business in Kuwait

MEED’s guide to doing business in Kuwait

4 November 2012

For many business people, Kuwait is one of the region’s sleeping giants

Public Authority for Housing Welfare, Kuwait Subscription

17 June 2013

Kuwait’s Public Authority for Housing Welfare (PAHW) is playing an increasingly important role in facilitating housing and public-private partnership projects

Banks and services in Kuwait Subscription

4 November 2012

Bank and services listings for Kuwait

Information providers in Kuwait Subscription

4 November 2012

A round up of media that reports on Kuwait

Ministries and state bodies in Kuwait Subscription

31 October 2012

Contact details for Kuwait ministries and organisations

Kuwait airport

Directorate General of Civil Aviation, Kuwait Subscription

31 October 2012

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) is in charge of the regulation of Kuwaiti airspace and the management and maintenance of Kuwait International Airport, the emirate’s single civil international hub

Kuwait University

Kuwait University Subscription

31 October 2012

In 2011, Kuwait University became the country’s biggest single client for construction services, awarding $1bn in construction deals. By September 2012, the university had already awarded five contracts worth $733m since January. According to regional projects tracker MEED Projects, a further $1.4bn of construction contracts are expected in 2013.

Kuwait Petroleum Corporation Subscription

29 October 2012

In a country that is dependent on oil production and export, Kuwait Petroleum Corporation (KPC) is a major cog in the economic machinery. Formed in 1980, it acts as a holding company for all Kuwait’s major oil, gas, and petrochemical assets, the most important of which are state oil and gas firm Kuwait Oil Company (KOC), refiner Kuwait National Petroleum Company ...

Oversee: The Partnerships Technical Bureau aims to ensure new projects are viable and legally watertight

Partnerships Technical Bureau, Kuwait Subscription

29 October 2012

In 2008, Kuwait’s government established the Partnerships Technical Bureau (PTB) to oversee a number of public-private projects

Healthcare in Kuwait Subscription

29 October 2012

The standard of healthcare, particularly private care, is relatively high in Kuwait, but the system is under pressure

Kuwait City: The emirate was less affected by the regional real estate boom than other Gulf countries

Property in Kuwait Subscription

28 October 2012

Kuwait’s property sector did not suffer the dramatic price falls seen in other GCC markets following the onset of the 2008 financial crisis

Private education: Kuwait's leading schools often have long waiting lists

Education in Kuwait Subscription

28 October 2012

The Gulf states typically offer a good standard of private education for the children of expatriates, and Kuwait is no exception

State carrier: Currently being privatised, Kuwait Airways serves about 40 destinations

Transport in Kuwait Subscription

28 October 2012

The best way to get around Kuwait City and the wider emirate is by car, either a rental, lease or taxi

Public-private partnerships in Kuwait Subscription

23 October 2012

Joss Dare of Ashurst Middle East explains how the private sector can work with the government

Employment law in Kuwait Subscription

23 October 2012

Kashif Syed and Mary Ann Sharp of law firm SNR Denton outline employers’ rights and obligations

Sharia in Kuwait Subscription

23 October 2012

Sharia is a form of law derived from Islamic principles

Setting up a company in Kuwait Subscription

23 October 2012

Sonia Salah, Ramy Shabana and Alex Saleh from law firm Al Tamimi & Company outline the legal issues foreigners face when establishing a business in Kuwait

Kuwait City

Ministry of Public Works, Kuwait Subscription

22 October 2012

Kuwait’s Ministry of Public Works (MPW) is in charge of the construction and maintenance of public buildings and key infrastructure, from roads and bridges to hospitals and sewage networks

Taxes in Kuwait Subscription

17 October 2012

Mary Ann Sharp of SNR Denton’s Kuwait office answers key questions about the Gulf state’s tax regime

Ministry of Health in Kuwait Subscription

17 October 2012

Kuwait is faced with a growing population and a lack of hospital space. The situation has been complicated by the rising prevalence of chronic diseases among the local population. Obesity has become a significant problem in the emirate, with 88 per cent of Kuwaitis classed as medically overweight, and a third of the population suffering from obesity. Currently, the state spends upwards of $1bn a year on sending citizens abroad for treatment, a bill that is likely to increase alongside ...

Ministry of Electricity and Water in Kuwait Subscription

17 October 2012

Kuwait has long struggled to meet rising domestic demand for electricity

Kuwait Ports Authority Subscription

16 October 2012

Kuwait has long planned to improve its status as a logistics and shipment hub

Burgan field: Sheikh Ahmed al-Jaber al-Sabah oversees Kuwait's first crude oil shipment on 30 June 1946

History of Kuwait Subscription

16 October 2012

The origins of Kuwait lie in the early 18th century, when clans of the Anaiza tribe migrated north from Qatar and the centre of the Arabian peninsula and came to populate the region

People and Culture in Kuwait Subscription

16 October 2012

Arabic is the official language of Kuwait, although English is commonly spoken

Map of Kuwait

Basic information on Kuwait Subscription

15 October 2012

The total area of Kuwait is 17,820 square kilometres

Kuwait trends

Kuwait City

Large surpluses to mitigate problems in Kuwait Subscription

12 January 2015

About 90 per cent of Kuwait’s budget revenues depend on income from oil

Kuwait oil and gas contract awards

Record oil and gas contract awards expected in Kuwait Subscription

6 January 2015 | By

Project contracts worth $21.5bn due to be awarded over 2015


Impact of falling oil prices on Kuwait Subscription

17 December 2014

Kuwait’s low budget breakeven price of $52.3 a barrel and its hefty sovereign wealth fund makes it the best prepared out of any Gulf nation to face a prolonged period of depressed oil prices, according to Moody’s Investors Service

Oil, gas and chemical awards in the GCC

GCC oil and gas spending hits four-year high in 2014 Subscription

15 December 2014 | By

Kuwait leads spending as Saudi Arabia has weakest year for contracts since 2004

WTI spot price

Riding out low oil prices Subscription

4 December 2014 | By

GCC nations brace for budget deficits as Opec offers no oil price support

Middle East contracts October 2014

Middle East contracts awarded: October 2014 Subscription

1 December 2014

Over $13bn of contracts awarded in October in the Middle East

November contract awards

Middle East contracts awarded: November 2014 Subscription

1 December 2014

Over $3bn of contracts awarded in November in the Middle East

Saudi oil production and brent crude price

Riyadh in strong position ahead of Opec meeting Subscription

18 November 2014 | By

Saudi Arabia showing no signs of cutting oil production despite falling prices

Energy use by Mena cities 2010

Mixed response to green building Subscription

13 November 2014 | By Paul Melly

Only some countries in the region have developed sustainability ratings for projects that seek to go beyond energy conservation and look at resource use and environmental impact

Kuwait electricity supply and power and water projects

Kuwait seeks answers to power challenge Subscription

2 November 2014 | By Richard Nield

As well as replacing ageing infrastructure, Kuwait needs to bring 9,000MW of new capacity onstream to meet demand growth projections up to 2020

Filter Kuwait analysis by sector

MEED comment

Saudi Aramco's Khurais oil field in Saudi Arabia

Masters of the new world energy order

18 January 2015 | By

The GCC, the worlds’ biggest energy exporter, and the US, the world’s largest energy consumer are emerging as leaders in a new world energy order

Saudi Aramco's Khurais oil field in Saudi Arabia

Why GCC producers are happy to see oil fall

18 December 2014 | By

The GCC’s oil producers will be the biggest winners from the 2014 oil price crash

Opec secretary-general Abdullah al-Badri

Opec sets the tone for 2015

15 December 2014 | By

Regional producers are not about to cut oil production and the assumptions that have underpinned forecasting in recent years have to be revisited

Oil gathering centre

Much at stake in the Divided Zone

4 December 2014 | By

Concerns increase as the land dispute between Kuwait and Saudi Arabia derails another project

Kuwait’s projects market is enjoying a long-awaited period of high activity

Bright future for Kuwait projects market Subscription

27 November 2014 | By

While contract awards are expected to keep flowing in 2015, the country is little prepared for the surge in activity

In the ongoing diplomatic squabble between Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain on one side and Qatar on the other, Kuwait is playing peacemaker

Kuwait sticks to the middle ground Subscription

16 October 2014 | By

In both GCC and wider regional disputes, Kuwait is content to remain a peacemaker

Kuwait Olefins 3 integration adds uncertainty to New Refinery Project

Olefins 3 integration adds uncertainty to New Refinery Project Subscription

9 October 2014 | By

Project merger sparks concerns about further delays

More MEED commentary

Special reports

Opec secretary-general Abdullah al-Badri

Opec sets the tone for 2015

15 December 2014 | By

Regional producers are not about to cut oil production and the assumptions that have underpinned forecasting in recent years have to be revisited


Kuwait stock exchange in need of reforms Subscription

15 October 2014

The bourse needs new regulations that will make it more appealing to investors

Kuwait City

Kuwait: Projects sector builds on recent progress Subscription

12 June 2014

Kuwait has sustained the momentum of its projects sectors build up from progress made last year, but how long will it last?

GCC real estate

Real Estate: GCC property markets stabilising Subscription

18 March 2014

There is an uptick in demand for residential and commercial property across the region, with just one or two exceptions

More Kuwait special reports

Market presentations

Middle East Outlook 2013

A region in transition: Middle East outlook 2013 and beyond Subscription

18 August 2013

Insight and analysis on the economic and projects outlook for the Middle East

Project Finance

Webinar: Middle East project finance outlook Subscription

17 June 2013

Market constraints to continue, with deals flowing to most stable markets in the region

After the Uprisings webinar

After the Uprisings: The outlook for business in the Middle East in 2013 and beyond Subscription

4 March 2013

A webinar on the region’s business environment, providing current data and exclusive expert analysis drawn from MEED’s team of experts


Webinar: Project opportunities in GCC wastewater Subscription

15 May 2012

Join MEED for an exclusive online seminar looking at the Gulf wastewater sector

Top 10 projects

Rank Project Name Sector Contract value ($m)
1 Clean Fuels Project 2020: Mina al-Ahmadi Package Oil 4,800
2 Clean Fuels Project 2020: Mina Abdulla: Package 1 Oil 3,800
3 Clean Fuels Project 2020: Mina Abdulla: Package 2 Oil 3,400
4 Sheikh Jaber Al Ahmed al-Sabah Causeway (Subiya Causeway) Transport 2,600
5 Al Zour North IWPP: Phase 1: Power Plant Power 1,363
6 Jaber Ahmed al-Jabber al-Sabah Hospital Construction 1,087
7 Al-Jahra Road Upgrade Transport 965
8 Nine Hospitals Expansion: Al Farwaniya Hospital Expansion Construction 941
9 Booster Station 171 Gas 900
10 Jamal Abdul Nasser Road Development Project Transport 881
Click through to the full data table on Kuwait's biggest projects in construction
Click through to MEED's Q3 2014 Top 100 Projects report
Source: MEED Projects; Data compiled: November 2014; All projects are in execution

Project awards

Kuwait awards $4.3bn deal to Petrofac

Kuwait awards $4.3bn deal to Petrofac Subscription

11 January 2015 | By

UK firm wins Lower Fars heavy oil development project contract

Kuwait awards Wafra substation deal

Kuwait approves Wafra substation deal Subscription

6 January 2015 | By

Siemens Electronics & Electrical Services Company submitted low bid

Avenues Mall in Kuwait

Al-Ahmadiah wins $391m contract for Kuwait mall project Subscription

27 November 2014 | By

Local contractor will build fourth phase of shopping development

Oil spill

Alghanim International wins contract for Kuwait clean-up Subscription

17 November 2014 | By

$28m project will involve excavating and transporting contaminated soil


Mushrif wins Kuwaiti wastewater deals Subscription

3 November 2014 | By

Local contractor will provide O&M services for wastewater plant and pumping station


Kuwait awards hospital expansion contract Subscription

29 October 2014 | By

Award is third major construction order placed in 2014


GS Engineering wins $585m Kuwait bridge contract Subscription

26 October 2014 | By

South Korean contractor will build Doha Link bridge, which will link with the Subiya Causeway

Water treatment

Dodsal starts work on Kuwait water plant Subscription

22 October 2014 | By

Dubai-based firm was awarded the contract on 15 September

Photovoltaic solar power

Kuwait Oil Company awards solar energy contract Subscription

8 September 2014 | By

Spanish company will build off-grid solar scheme at upstream facility

Projects trends

Gulf projects index

Qatar the worst performer on Gulf index Subscription

20 January 2015

Qatar’s project market declines by 2.1 per cent after the scrapping of Al-Karaana project

Gulf projects index

Gulf index records modest growth Subscription

13 January 2015

Saudi Arabia’s projects market sees sole decline in region

Gulf Projects Index

Iran records biggest decline in five years Subscription

6 January 2015

Islamic Republic sees $15.8bn wiped off projects market

More Gulf Projects index

All companies


Agility Subscription

Kuwait based, Agility is a global logistics leader with two main lines of business: commercial logistics and a portfolio of logistics-related businesses.

Ahli United Bank

Ahli United Bank (Kuwait) Subscription

Ahli United Bank Kuwait formerly The Bank of Kuwait and Middle East, was converted to an Islamic Bank under the present corporate identity in April 2010  

See all Kuwait company profiles



Bob Hope Subscription

25 January 2015

Bob Hope is CEO of SSH

Mohammad Ghazi al-Mutairi Subscription

22 January 2015

Mohammad Ghazi al-Mutairi is CEO, Kuwait National Petroleum Company

Rashid al-Nafisi Subscription

22 September 2014

Rashid al-Nafisi is chairman of the Al-Mazaya Holding Company

Salwa Nabil Malhas Subscription

16 September 2014

Salwa Nabil Malhas is chief business development and marketing officer at Al-Mazaya Holding

Ibrahim Abdul Rahman al-Saqabi Subscription

16 September 2014

Ibrahim Abdul Rahman al-Saqabi is CEO at Al-Mazaya Holding Company

Mohammad Menwer al-Mutairi

11 March 2014

Mohammad Menwer al-Mutairi is founder and chairman of Consultative Group in Kuwait

See all Kuwait biographies

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