Middle East - KUWAIT


Kuwait City

Country Profile:

Kuwait – whose name is a diminutive of an Arabic word meaning ‘fortress built near water - is a small, oil-rich country nestling at the top of the Gulf, flanked by large or powerful neighbours - Saudi Arabia to the south, Iraq to the north and Iran to the east.

Its oil fields were first exploited in the 1930s, and since the development of the petroleum industry after World War II and independence in 1961, oil has dominated the economy, making up around 90% of export revenues. It is believed to have around 10% of the world’s oil reserves. Kuwait is a constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary system of government

Main Trade Partners:

France, India, Italy, Japan, Singapore, UK, USA, Saudi Arabia

Main Industries:

Oil & Gas, Cement, Construction, Ship Repair, Food Processing


2,596,799 incl 1,291,354 non-nationals (July 2008 CIA World Factbook est.)


17,820 sq. km.


130.1 bn. (2007 IMF est.)

GDP Real Growth Rate:

4.6% (2007 CIA World Factbook est.)

GDP per Head:

$39,306 (2007 IMF est.)

GDP per Sector:

Services 48.1, Industry 51.6%, Agriculture 0.3% (2007 CIA World Factbook est.)

Stock Market Capitalisation:

$128.9 bn. (2006 CIA World Factbook)

Exchange Rate:

1 Kuwaiti Dinar = 0.269 US$ (Sept ’08)
1 US$ = 0.269 Kuwaiti Dinars

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