KUWAIT, Sept 26 (Reuters) - Kuwait expects to approve its
2012/13 budget by emiri decree soon, finance minister Nayef
al-Hajraf told state-news agency KUNA on Wednesday.
A political stand-off in the Gulf state meant the OPEC
member's parliament has yet to approve the budget for its
2012/13 fiscal year which started in April.
"We expect the issuance of a decree on that draft at the
earliest opportunity," Hajraf said after a meeting with Emir
Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah and other economic officials,
The emir, who has the last say in state matters, can issue
decrees when parliament is not in session.
The draft budget, first outlined in March, envisages a
spending increase of about 13 percent. The budget is expected to
total around 22 billion dinars ($78 billion) expenditure, with
14 billion in revenues, mostly from oil and implying a deficit.
However, the projection was based on oil at $65 per barrel.
Kuwait booked a record budget surplus of 13.2 billion dinars
in 2011/2012 thanks to strong oil income and lower spending.
While Kuwait's fiscal position is strong, it has been
struggling with persistent political upheaval which has held up
Earlier this year, its Constitutional Court effectively
dissolved a parliament elected in February and dominated by
The old, more government-tilted assembly that it reinstated
has been unable to convene due to a boycott, mainly by
opposition MPs. Analysts say this means another dissolution was
likely, with a new election this year or next.
On Tuesday, Kuwait's top court rejected a government bid to
alter voting boundaries, leaving it without a clear solution to
break the parliamentary deadlock after the next elections.
(Reporting by Sylvia Westall; Editing by Dan Lalor)