Kuwait parliament budget committee hold meeting

GMT 15:26 2014 Wednesday ,18 June

Arab Today, arab today Kuwait parliament budget committee hold meeting

Kuwait parliament budget committee hold meeting
Kuwait - KUNA

The parliament discussed the 2014-15 budget of projects and public utilities pertaining to ministries and state bodies on Wednesday.
   The estimates of article 4 of the budget proposal dropped to KD 1.758 billion in comparison with KD 2.222 billion a year earlier, representing a KD 464 million (20.9 percent) decrease, said the head of the parliamentary committee tasked with the affair, lawmaker Adnan Abdulsamed.
   The drop is mostly evident in construction projects, the estimates of which fell from KD 1.833 billion to KD 1.329 billion - a drop of KD 504 million (27.5 percent).
   He said that the Finance Ministry attributed the drop, he described as "huge", to the request of the state bodies, the Ministry of Electricity and Water and Ministry of Public Works in particular.
   Despite this, projects underway, including some 531, have increased, he added, with an estimated total cost of KD 19.3 billion in respect of approved appropriations that witness decreases on a year-on-year average and due to the deficiency and delay of their execution.
   The committee urged the importance of the Finance Ministry's coordination with state bodies to review all obstacles that stand in the way of completing these projects and to do the necessary to complete them.
   The committee also reviewed construction project appropriations listed for the budgets of the ministries of public works and electricity and water - the estimates of which also witnessed drops.
   According to the Ministry of Public Works, a rise in the average of execution during this period was attributed to the ministry's referral of project appropriations that have obstacles to that of those who do not.
   The ministry added that the transferring of appropriations from a project to another reflects the inaccuracy of practices, requesting a clarification into whether there were in fact any appropriations pertaining to projects that face no obstacles.
   The response to this was that there is a lack of appropriations designated to certain projects.
   The lawmaker added that amongst the new projects was the Civil Aviation Authority's purchase of the Kuwait International Airport terminal which belonged to the now non-operational Wataniya Airways in a deal worth KD 4 million - proposed a budget of KD 3.5 million.
   The project was not regarded as construction-based by the lawmaker, who said it fell under public properties, thus requiring prior approvals.
   Most state construction projects have been idle for over 10 years, and have not received spending in spite of appropriations being made for them on an annual basis.
   They have not yet been delved into as they are currently in the design phase. These include the Central Statistics Administration, the Fatwa and Legislation Department and the ministries of foreign affairs, trade and industry, justice and awqaf and islamic affairs.
   Some 224 construction projects, adopted in 2012-13, worth KD 118.9 million have not received spending whatsoever, he added.
   Of these projects allocated for long-term HQs for some state bodies, some have not been completed since 2001, with rented venues costing an annual KD 3.9 million in total.
   He went on to urge state bodies to carry out their projects according to a precise plan and timeframe

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