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Cabinet may see reshuffle in November to avoid grillings

KUWAIT: Parliamentary sources said the government may see a Cabinet reshuffle before the end of the year and expected it to take place in November to avoid grillings that will affect those ministers. The government also wants a term that is full of legislative achievements.

Sources said Oil Minister Bakheet Al-Rasheedi may leave his post in the anticipated reshuffle, especially since he faced a grilling during the previous term and may face a new one that has the support of MPs who sided with him during the first grilling. They said new events in the oil sector and the projects there call for a new minister who is aware of the future plans away from any clashes with the National Assembly.

Furthermore, the sources said Social Affairs Minister and State Minister for Economic Affairs Hind Al-Sabeeh could also leave her post as she faced five grillings and will face a new one in the coming term. Her presence has become an embarrassment for the government, as it defended her a lot in the past to save her politically, the sources proclaimed. Meanwhile, MPs who sided with her have told the government that to continue their support is politically very expensive for them, especially since she did not deal with issues she promised to tackle, including social aid and handicapped and social care homes inmates, besides her failure in the development plan issues so far.

Information Minister and State Minister for Youth Affairs Mohammad Al-Jabri will return to parliament as an MP, said the sources, adding that plans are to appoint two MPs as ministers in the government. It is rumored that Ali Al-Deqbasi will be one of them, as he belongs to the Rasheedi tribe. Meanwhile, Housing Affairs Minister Jenan Bushehri may leave her post because she did not add anything to the housing issue, though she may take the social affairs portfolio if Sabeeh leaves, according to the sources. The commerce ministry may see a ministerial change, but it is not clear so far if Minister Khaled Al-Roudhan will leave the Cabinet or take another post, which may be of finance or oil, if an MP does not take it, the sources speculated.

FATCA treaty
The Capital Markets Authority issued a circular to all licensed entities with regards to the FATCA treaty signed on April 29, 2015 between the Finance Ministry and the US Department of Treasury, which stipulates that finance establishments operating outside the US must submit a report regularly to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and the following should be adhered to:
1) The finance ministry receives FATCA reports for the year 2017 during the period from June 1 until Aug 30, 2018 through the ministry’s website, as per the statement of the IRS with regards to copy number 2 regarding requirements of the FATCA report form.
2) Financial establishments registered on the IRS site should adhere to submit FATCA reports annually even if they do not have US accounts.
3) Financial establishments that have late reports for previous years must submit them separately for each year.
4) Companies that wish to cancel previous reports due to mistakes can do this through direct contact with the IRS.

Rented cars
The Ministry of Electricity and Water (MEW) received the first batch of rented cars according to a signed contract, and will be distributed to employees whose jobs require them to go to work outdoors. MEW received the approval of the Central Tenders Committee for its employees based on two contracts with two companies to rent 1,646 cars for three months as a temporary solution.

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