Economy of Kuwait
Kuwait is a small, relatively open economy. The Kuwaiti currency is the highest-valued currency unit in the world. Kuwait has nearly 10% of the world's oil reserves. Petroleum accounts for nearly half of GDP and 95% of export revenues and government income. In recent years, Kuwait has done little to diversify its economy due to positive fiscal situation and hostile relationship between the parliament and government, which has prevented the implementation of economic reforms.
Kuwait's first free-trade zone was inaugurated in 1999. Kuwait has a well-developed banking system. The National Bank of Kuwait is the largest bank in the country and one of the largest in the Arab world.
Kuwait's revenues rely significantly on oil, increasing from 85% of total revenues in 2001 to 95% in 2013. Diversification of the economy remains a long-term issue. In recent years, Kuwait has done little to diversify its economy due to positive fiscal situation and hostile relationship between the National Assembly parliament and government, which has prevented the implementation of economic reforms. SectorsOil
In the Offshore Divided Zone, the Arabian Oil Co. - 80% owned by Japanese interests and 10% each by the Kuwaiti and Saudi Governments - has produced on behalf of both countries since 1961. The original concession agreements will expire in January 2003; negotiations to replace the concession with a technical service agreement should be completed in 2002. The Kuwait Petroleum Corporation (KPC), an integrated international oil company, is the parent company of the government's operations in the petroleum sector, and includes Kuwait Oil Company, which produced oil and gas; Kuwait National Petroleum Co., refining and domestic sales; Petrochemical Industries Co., producing ammonia and urea; Kuwait Foreign Petroleum Exploration Co., with several concessions in developing countries; Kuwait Oil Tanker Co.; and Santa Fe International Corp. The latter, purchased outright in 1982, gives KPC a worldwide presence in the petroleum industry. Agriculture
Agriculture accounts for 1% of Kuwait's economy and 8% of the gross domestic product. The agricultural sector provides fruit and vegetables for sale in the country's supermarkets. Agriculture is limited by the lack of water and arable land. The government has experimented in growing food through hydroponics and carefully managed farms. Shipping
The Kuwait Oil Tankers Co. has 35 crude oil and refined product carriers and is the largest tanker company in an OPEC country. Kuwait also is a member of the United Arab Shipping Company.
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