KUWAIT: People queue to receive the COVID-19 vaccine at the Kuwait Vaccination Center at the Mishref fairgrounds yesterday. – Xinhua

By B Izzak

KUWAIT: MP Hisham Al-Saleh yesterday sent a series of questions to the finance minister asking why airfares to and from Kuwait have sharply increased since the summer holidays started. Saleh told the minister in his questions that “the prices of air tickets to the country have recorded a crazy rise since Eid Al-Adha and the summer vacation”.

He added that airlines have cited limitations on the number of seats due to the reduction in the capacity of Kuwait airport as a result of the measures against the coronavirus pandemic. Saleh pointed out that despite increasing the capacity of Kuwait airport, the prices of air tickets have not dropped, especially after allowing vaccinated expats to return to the country from August 1.

The lawmaker asked the minister about the reasons for the continued hike in airfares despite boosting the airport’s capacity. He also asked if the government has any plan to bring down the price of tickets and questioned why state-owned Kuwait Airways does not make competitive offers. Airfares to Kuwait and other countries have more than doubled on many routes due to limited seats available for booking. Prices on the Kuwait-Dubai route more than tripled at one stage and still continue to be extremely high.

Meanwhile, MP Mubarak Al-Hajraf yesterday warned the government against going ahead with reported plans to fund Lebanon’s part of the so-called Arab gas pipeline, which will bring natural gas from Egypt to Jordan, Syria and Lebanon. Hajraf said he will send questions to the government shortly about visits made by the foreign minister to Egypt and if these visits were linked to the Arab gas pipeline and statements by the new Lebanese prime minister about a pledged Kuwaiti loan to fund Lebanon’s portion of the project.

The lawmaker called on the government to resign for failing to manage the national economy and for talking about offering foreign loans while the country faces fiscal problems and officials speak about raising fuel and electricity prices and cutting subsidies.