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The history of Kuwait’s oil and gas

At the summit of Kuwait’s economy sits the power of the lucrative oil and gas industry. Though Kuwait now hopes to diversify its sources of revenue, there is no denying the continued importance of the mighty energy industry.

Kuwait holds the fifth-largest oil reserves in the world, with an estimated 101.5 billion barrels. Petroleum accounts for more than half of GDP, 94% of export revenues, and 90% of government income. Revenue from oil reached KD 13.3 billion in 2017.

To recognize the importance of oil to Kuwait’s economy and future, Kuwait Oil Company has dedicated an exhibition to honoring its past.

The exhibition was named after the ruler of the country who discovered oil in his reign in 1938 and exported the first oil shipment in 1946, Sheikh Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah. It includes in its halls, nine areas starting from the ground floor, which contains a large curved screen that displays scenes from the oil industry.

Kuwaiti guides take you to the museum’s basement where you will see a four-dimensional hologram show about the origin of oil. In the third area, the guide talks about the search for oil and its exploration. The fourth area in the upper level is a hall designed 360 degrees to see all the features of the Ahmadi area and its oil facilities.

Everything related to the phases of extraction and refining and oil industries is located in the fifth and sixth areas. The seventh and eighth sections were devoted to the story of a fire brigade that succeeded in extinguishing about 700 oil wells after the Iraqi invasion, causing a global and economic environmental catastrophe. Part of the exhibit is dedicated to the commemoration of the international and Kuwaiti teams that extinguished the oil well fires after the liberation of Kuwait.

Finally, it comes as a surprise when you reach the end of the tour, where you can visualize the number of barrels produced by Kuwait per second and per minute compared to the heights of skyscrapers such as Burj Khalifa, the twin towers in Malaysia and others. The exhibition also contains many facilities, services, a coffee shop and a gift store, and it’s accessible for the disabled.

By Athoob Alshuaibi

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