According to recent figures published by the Gulf Cooperation Council (G.C.C), Kuwait sits ‘proudly’ a top of the “foreign investment” throne when compared with its 5 other member nations.
Yes, that’s right – Kuwait LOVES to send its money abroad in an effort to reap foreign dividends and stimulate more (apparently) ‘needy’ economies…….Well – that’s all very nice and romantic – but in the real world – it highlights everything that is wrong with Kuwait.
Did you know that many of those mega projects which are on-going in Dubai were originally designed to be implemented in Kuwait? Did you know that Kuwaitis are one of the biggest investors in Dubai’s recent transformation into a business and touristic powerhub? Can someone tell me why? Long ago, there was the old excuse about investing outside Kuwait – because of the threat of Saddam…..Well, what’s today’s excuse?
No matter what even the most patriotic of Kuwaitis will try to convince you of – Kuwait is far from the perfect ‘Utopian Society’ which was originally defined by a certain Sir Thomas Moore back in the 14th century. There are plenty of things which need improvement, things which could be rectified with such ease – that it makes me angry just thinking about them.
Take for example some of those nasty, bumpy roads that I have to drive across on a daily basis. And No, I’m not talking about Jleeb or some of the poorer districts of Kuwait. Has anyone taken a look at the backstreets of Salmiya ‘The Entertainment Capital’ recently? Some of those back roads are a disgrace and would look out of place in Bangladesh – one of the World’s poorest nations.
What about all these electrical cuts? We are a country of only 2.8 million people. We are a country who sits on 10% of the Word’s Oil Reserves. Given that we have been blessed with such incredible resource, shouldn’t we have a ‘state of the art’ infrastructure which is the envy of the world? Are we living in 2006 or 1946? Sometimes I wonder.
What about the schools’ in Kuwait? Has anyone taken a look at any of them recently? Many run-down, poorly equipped, poorly maintained old buildings. Only now are the Government talking about refurbishment. Why?
Let’s look at another source of contention:
Notice that whenever a (Natural / Non) Foreign Disaster Occurs, who is always the first to open the bank vault and start start distributing Financial Aid?
- Lebanon Attack – $300 million gets sent immediately. (This was a donation, a $500 m deposit was also made into the Lebanon Central Bank, Billions more have apparently been agreed for loans)
- Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans – $500 million is sent for relief efforts
- Tsunami Indonesia – $20 – $200 m (numbers are still very vague)
Whilst I do not in anyway condemn such efforts, on the contrary, I think it’s wonderful that Kuwait can always be relied upon to be one of the first to dip its hand into its deep pockets – but let’s face it – there are some serious issues that need to be both embettered and rectified on our own front door step BEFORE we start catering to the needs of others.
Next time you are driving down one of those bumpy, dark roads and suddenly hear one of your wheels crunch into a pot hole – don’t curse Kuwait, don’t curse the road – curse those who see it fit to send theirs and our money abroad to fund yet another useless Mega Mall or seemingly other ‘more worthy’ cause.