Kuwait's cabinet has approved Mohammad al-Hashel as the new governor of the country's central bank, promoting him from his position as deputy, state news agency KUNA reported on Sunday, marking the first change at the helm in over two decades.
The 37-year-old replaces Sheikh Salem Abdul-Aziz al-Sabah, a member of the ruling family who resigned last month after 25 years in the job, protesting at a rapid rise in government spending.
Hashel, who has a postgraduate degree in finance from Old Dominion University in Virginia, had been serving as Sheikh Salem's deputy since January 2009.
Hashel is also a member of the technical committee of the Islamic Financial Services Board (IFSB), according to his biography posted on the central bank's website www.cbk.gov.kw.
Kuwait pegs its dinar to an undisclosed basket of currencies of major trading partners, which is believed to be heavily U.S. dollar-dominated.
That makes the OPEC member's central bank keep its policy broadly aligned with U.S. benchmarks although it is less exposed to the greenback's fluctuations than in the case of a direct peg.
Unlike fellow Gulf oil exporters, Kuwait dropped the direct dollar link in 2007 to rein in rising inflation, which climbed as high as 11.6 percent in August 2008.