Positive outlook against backdrop of New Kuwait Reforms, infrastructure expansion

OBG business barometer: Kuwait CEO survey published

KUWAIT: Almost three-quarters (74 percent) of CEOs interviewed in Kuwait by the global research and consultancy firm Oxford Business Group (OBG) for its latest survey said they were likely or very likely to make a significant capital investment in the country over the next 12 months.

As part of its 2017 Business Barometer: Kuwait CEO Survey, OBG asked dozens of high-level executives from across the country’s economic sectors a wide-ranging series of questions on a face-to-face basis aimed at gauging business sentiment. The findings are now available to view on OBG’s Editors’ Blog at: http://www.oxfordbusinessgroup.com/blog/oliver-cornock/obg-business-barometer-kuwait-ceo-survey

In response to a separate question, 80 percent of respondents said they felt positive or very positive about local business conditions.

The overwhelming majority (94 percent) of business leaders surveyed also described Kuwait’s current tax environment as competitive or very competitive on a global scale – a topical issue, since a number of new taxes are expected to be introduced in the near term.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, given the key role that the state continues to play in Kuwait’s economy, 45 percent of respondents said government spending accounted for at least 60 percent of their business.

Commenting on the results, Oliver Cornock, OBG’s editor-in-chief and managing editor for the Middle East, said that while the pace of economic reform in Kuwait had been slower than elsewhere across the region, huge projects taking shape under the $112bn five-year National Development Plan for 2015-20 and the New Kuwait vision for 2035 were playing a pivotal role in boosting investor sentiment.

“These high levels of government spending on infrastructure and reform programs will be key in helping Kuwait to work towards its increasingly pressing goal of developing the private sector into a more significant engine of growth,” he said. “A number of business leaders we surveyed shared their concerns about the tempo of change in Kuwait and the importance of maintaining momentum when it comes to reforms and investment. However, our business barometer points to a broadly favorable outlook among CEOs who are keen to play a part in the next phase of the country’s growth story.”

Cornock’s in-depth evaluation of the survey’s results can be found on OBG’s Editors’ Blog, titled ‘Next Frontier’. All four of OBG’s regional managing editors use the platform to share their expert analysis of the latest developments taking place across the sectors of the 30+ high-growth markets covered by the company’s research.

The OBG Business Barometer: Kuwait CEO Survey has been produced in partnership with the law firm, Al Tamimi & Co. The OBG Business Barometer: CEO Surveys mark an addition to the Group’s extensive portfolio of research tools. The full results of the survey on Kuwait will be made available online and in print. Similar studies are also under way in the other markets in which OBG operates.

This article was published on 01/10/2017