Kuwait says it holds 10 percent of global crude reserves
A worker at the Al-Rawdhatain oilfield in Kuwait. OPEC member Kuwait has posted record budget surplus and revenues in the 2011-2012 fiscal year that ended on March 31 on the back of high oil output and price, an economic report says. © Yasser al-Zayyat - AFP/File
Kuwait says it holds 10 percent of global crude reserves
AFP
Last updated: August 5, 2012

Kuwait has record surplus in 2011-2012

OPEC member Kuwait has posted record budget surplus and revenues in the 2011-2012 fiscal year that ended on March 31 on the back of high oil output and price, an economic report said on Sunday.

The oil-rich Gulf state posted a historical budget surplus of 13.2 billion dinars ($47 billion) for the 13th consecutive fiscal year, the Al-Shall Economic Consultants said in a report citing official figures.

The previous highest surplus of 9.33 billion dinars ($33.2 billion) was posted in the 2007-2008 fiscal year when oil prices skyrocketted to a record $147 a barrel.

Kuwait had projected a deficit of $21 billion for 2011-2012 because it calculated oil income at $60 a barrel compared to the actual $110 a barrel and oil output at 2.2 million barrels per day compared to the actual production of 3.0 million bpd.

Kuwait has projected a deficit in each of the past 13 fiscal years but ended in surplus mainly for calculating oil income at a very conservative price.

Under Kuwaiti law, 10 percent of revenues are deducted every year in favour of the emirate's sovereign wealth fund, the assets of which are estimated at about $400 billion. Returns on the fund are not included in the budget.

Revenues in the past fiscal year hit a record 30.2 billion dinars ($107.5 billion), Al-Shall reported, more than twice the budget projections of $47.7 billion.

Last year's income is 40.5 percent higher than the previous record of 21.5 billion dinars ($76.5 billion) posted in the 2010-2011 fiscal year.

Oil revenues also reached a record 28.6 billion dinars ($101.7 billion) making up 94.5 percent of total income and more than twice the budget projections.

Spending was 17.0 billion dinars ($60.5 billion), down 12.5 percent on budget projections but a small five percent rise from the previous year.

Kuwait has not yet issued its budget for the current fiscal year of 2012/2013 although it has started on April 1 due to a political dispute between the government and parliament.

The Gulf state adopts a cradle-to-grave welfare policy where a majority of citizens are employed by the government, receive handsome salaries, pay no taxes and receive services at low charges or for free.

Kuwait, with a native population of 1.2 million in addition to 2.5 million foreigners, says it holds 10 percent of global crude reserves.

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