Economic growth in Kuwait to strengthen on the back of oil prices: IMF

Kuwait announced a 2019/20 budget that included a 4.7 percent rise in spending to 22.5 billion dinars ($74.15 billion). (AFP)
Updated 29 January 2019

Economic growth in Kuwait to strengthen on the back of oil prices: IMF

  • Inflation rate is expected to rise in 2019–20 to about 2.5 percent as deflationary factors seen in 2018 unwind
  • Last week, Kuwait announced a 2019/20 budget that included a 4.7 percent rise in spending to 22.5 billion dinars

DUBAI: The International Monetary Fund said on Monday Kuwait’s non-oil growth is projected to increase to about 3.5 percent in 2020, from 2.5 percent last year, as higher oil prices will boost capital spending.
“The mission has assumed an average oil price of $57 per barrel in 2019–20, increasing to $60 per barrel over the medium term,” the IMF said in a statement at the end of an official staff visit to the OPEC member.
“As capital project implementation accelerates, non-oil growth is projected to increase to about 3.5 percent in 2020.”
The IMF also said the recent OPEC decision to cut production is expected to hold oil output to 2 percent growth in 2019, which could rebound to 2.5 percent in 2020 given spare capacity.
The inflation rate is expected to rise in 2019–20 to about 2.5 percent as deflationary factors seen in 2018 unwind, the fund said.
It said higher oil revenues and investment income helped improve the overall fiscal balance in 2017/18 to an estimated surplus of 8 percent of GDP, which will reach almost 12 percent of GDP in fiscal year 2018/19.
Delays to the passage of a new debt law have left the government unable to issue debt since October 2017, forcing it to draw on the state General Reserve Fund for financing, including to repay maturing debt, the IMF said.
“Continued fiscal consolidation will be needed to reduce financing needs over the medium term,” the Fund added.
Last week, Kuwait announced a 2019/20 budget that included a 4.7 percent rise in spending to 22.5 billion dinars ($74.15 billion). Salaries and subsidies accounted for 71 percent of the budget.


Apple to launch first online store in India next week

Updated 18 September 2020

Apple to launch first online store in India next week

  • The company at present uses third-party online and offline retailers to sell its products in the country
  • India has become a key focus of tech giants over the last few years

NEW DELHI: Apple announced Friday that it will launch its first online store in India next week, as it seeks to increase sales in one of the world’s fastest-growing smartphone markets.
The company at present uses third-party online and offline retailers to sell its products in the country.
Apple CEO Tim Cook said in a tweet that the company “can’t wait to connect with our customers and expand support in India.”
The Sept. 23 launch comes ahead of India’s major Hindu festival season beginning next month.
With a nearly 1.4 billion people, including millions of new Internet users every month, India has become a key focus of tech giants over the last few years.
In August, three contract manufacturers for Apple iPhones and South Korea’s Samsung applied for large-scale electronics manufacturing rights in India under a $6.5 billion incentive scheme announced by the government.
Apple assembles some smartphones at Foxconn and Wistron’s plants in two southern Indian states.