100,000 Kuwaitis on subsidised housing wait list

Number of government housing applicants is expected to grow by thousands over the next few years

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RELATED ARTICLES: Emiratis to receive $353mn in housing grants | Government funding insufficient to meet Iraq infrastructure demands | UAE charity project to build houses for homeless in Kerala  Kuwait, one of the world’s richest countries per capita and a major oil producer in the region is facing a shortage of government-funded housing, with reports suggesting the locals may have to wait for almost two decades on the housing list. “The housing issue is the top priority in this session,” parliament speaker Marzouq al-Ghanim said at the opening of the National Assembly yesterday. “We have enough finances to solve this problem,” he added, and pointed out that the country needed a watertight plan and timetable to correct the shortage. As per the country’s extensive welfare programme, Kuwaiti men can apply for government housing after marriage, leading to acquisition of loans that are only gradually paid off. The waiting list for government-subsidised housing has more than 100,000 applicants as of 2013. This number is expected to grow by thousands over the next few years, given that over half of the total 1.2 million Kuwaiti nationals are under 25 years of age. The country’s prime minister, Sheikh Jaber al-Mubarak al-Sabah had warned earlier this week about the Kuwaiti welfare system being unsustainable, stating the country needs to pull back on its consumption of natural resources.

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