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Kuwait should look into surging rents and expat policies

Majority of expatriates consider rising rents to be the biggest issue, and they would like to see a seal on climbing rents, revealed the latest online poll. Nearly 32 percent of those surveyed said they would like to see a control on climbing rentals.

Over the last five years, there has been a near 100 percent growth in house rentals in most parts of Kuwait. For instance, a double bedroom flat in the city cost KD170 (USD600) five years ago, and now it is KD300 (USD1000).

According to respondents if the rentals continue to shoot up at this pace, the government will have to work too hard to reduce the expat population in the country, and expats will have to leave on their own.

Another issue that saw maximum votes is ‘amnesty’, largely due to strict rules against residence violators and large number of expats that were deported in recent months. Expats are said to be harbouring negative image of deportation centers, as people have to wait for weeks before they are deported. Amnesty basically allows people to leave Kuwait without fines or fingerprinting, which imply they can come back to Kuwait to work at a later date. Some voters also expressed that they would like to see more restriction on visa issuance, as there are more people entering the country. While it helps economy on one side, it also fosters crime.

However, on the other hand, about 13percent contradicted this view and mentioned that visa procedures should be eased. Visas should be easier to obtain, as when people are able to bring in their families, it creates a psychologically healthy workforce.

Some other issues suggested included better security for nationals and residents in malls and prohibiting business transactions on Fridays.

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