Emir Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmed Al Jaber Al Sabah on the importance of assisting in youth development and conserving resources: Viewpoint

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Emir Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmed Al Jaber Al Sabah


Enabling the Kuwaiti citizen to be academically and practically qualified, to have the capacity for ownership and the experience required by the labour market are our main priorities. We work to develop a citizen who believes in his religion and his country; who holds firm to his values, principles and heritage; and who carries out his public duties prior to claiming his personal rights. This is what we want for the youth of Kuwait. They all have our support, encouragement and care. We are open to debate with them and we are open to hearing from them, engaging with them, guiding them, training them, and enabling them to shoulder the responsibilities of the country and take leading positions in the achievement of Kuwait’s interests. Human development is the base, tool and objective of comprehensive development. States and communities advance via the development of their peoples.

I have appealed many times for focusing upon economic development and creating productive economic activities that provide job opportunities for youth and diversify the country’s sources of income, in order to minimise our national economy’s dependence upon oil. We are now witnessing another cycle of decreasing oil prices, due to economic and political factors that are rocking the global economy. This negatively reflects upon our national economy. I have called upon the government and the assembly to shoulder our nation’s liabilities by issuing legislation and making decisions to protect our oil and financial wealth, which is not owned by us alone, but to coming generations as well. We have to utilise our resources ideally to guarantee the continuity of the Kuwaiti citizen and the growth of the national economy. We shoulder the responsibility for preventing the waste of resources, rationalising expenditures and directing support to those who deserve it, without compromising the basic needs of the citizen or reducing their standards of living.

Among the challenges we face as an oil-producing and exporting country is a decline in prices to levels that have begun to affect incomes and development programmes for our country and other countries in the region. We are called today to strengthen the path of our shared economic work; emphasising the necessity of implementing all the economic agreements among GCC countries to be able to confront the effects of these challenges. Legitimate concerns and fears compel us to work tirelessly to maintain our achievements amid difficult regional and international circumstances, which justify our concerns. We believe that differences in points of view are normal and necessary, and should neither cause panic, nor reach the level of dispute and boycott, which would undoubtedly weaken us and undermine our ability to maintain our progress.

I have stressed, on several occasions, that the real wealth of our country lies in its youth – its builders and drivers of growth. I believe they hold the vision of future Kuwait, that they are the formers of tomorrow and the drivers of future prosperity. We will continue to take action to empower our youth, to develop their potential and capabilities, to address their issues and remove obstacles in their way, assuring them that we shall never withhold our assistance of effort or money.

We have already seen several proposed changes become realities, the most important of which were the establishment of the Ministry of Youth Affairs and the creation of a fund for the development of small enterprises. These were in addition to a range of actions, decisions and laws related to the affairs of the youth. The coming days will witness many initiatives that put our youth on the road to achievement and enable them to contribute to and participate in responsibly developing and constructing our country.

Our young people have to be more aware of and mature in their convictions, and devote their time and energy to seeking knowledge and understanding modern science. They should carry out their work and their responsibilities with devotion and sincerity, and not pay attention to the calls and slogans that are employed to distract them from their goals and the objectives of building their future and the future of their country.

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