Crown Prince attends 70th anniversary celebrations of KIO


Under the patronage and in presence of His Highness the Crown Prince Sheikh Mishal Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, Kuwait Investment Office (KIO) celebrated its 70th anniversary in London on 29, August.

Upon his arrival at the celebration, His Highness the Crown Prince was warmly welcomed by Kuwait’s Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Oil, Minister of State for Economic Affairs and Investments, Acting Minister of Finance, and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA, Dr. Saad Al-Barak; Minister of Foreign Affairs of Kuwait, Sheikh Salem Abdullah Al-Jaber AI-Sabah; the Managing Director of KIA, Ghanem Al-Ghenaiman; and KIA board members as well as senior officials from the leading global financial institutions in the world.

In an opening speech, Dr. Saad Al-Barrak said, “With the wisdom of Kuwait’s forefathers, an agreement was signed between His Highness Sheikh Abdullah AI-Salem AI-Sabah and His Majesty’s Political Agent in 1953, which established the Kuwait Investment Board in London on 23 February, 1953, the predecessor of the Kuwait Investment Office.”

“The objective of the Kuwait Investment Board was to provide a long-term investment return and an alternative income to oil reserves so as to enable Kuwait’s future generations to face uncertainties ahead with greater confidence. This foresight has enabled the KIA, the oldest sovereign wealth fund in the world, to become one of the largest globally,” Dr. Al-Barrak added.

In his address to the high-level attendees, Al-Ghenaiman stated, “The UK offers numerous attractive investment opportunities in healthcare, energy, real estate and infrastructure, to name a few key sectors.

“With its wholly-owned entities based in London — St. Martins Property and Wren House Infrastructure — KIA participates in strategic opportunities in UK’s real estate and infrastructure. This includes direct holdings in London City Airport and Associated British Ports and indirectly in numerous other projects.

In fact, the KIA is one of the largest international real estate owners in the UK,” he pointed out. “KIO’s Platinum Jubilee celebration is a landmark occasion. Despite today’s challenging world and current geopolitical turmoil, the close cooperation between the UK and Kuwait will continue to prosper and grow for years to come,” Al-Ghenaiman added.

Speaking on the occasion, UK Chancellor of the Exchequer Jeremy Hunt confirmed the strong relationship between the two countries and reaffirmed the continued cooperation to further increase Kuwait’s investments in the UK.

Prior to the event, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the Kuwait Investment Authority and the United Kingdom, confirming KIA’s intention to enhance the bilateral relations through industrial partnership and increased investments into the UK.

The signing ceremony was attended by His Highness the Crown Prince and British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak.The deal was co-signed by Dr. Saad Al-Barak, alongside British Minister of State in the Department for Business and Trade Lord Dominic Johnson.The ceremony was attended by Kuwait’s foreign affairs minister and a host of senior Kuwaiti diplomats and foreign ministry officials.

Ahead of the celebrations held to mark the 70th anniversary of establishing KIO in London, the Arab-British Chamber of Commerce (ABCC) lauded His Highness the Crown Prince Sheikh Mishal Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah’s visit to the UK to inaugurate the event.

In a media interview, Chairman of the ABCC Baroness Elizabeth Symons of Vernham Dean welcomed the visit by His Highness the Crown Prince and affirmed that the presence of the Kuwait Investment Office in London for seven decades was a testament to the strength of Kuwaiti-British relations.

She revealed that Kuwaitis were one of the biggest investors in the UK with a huge volume of investments, adding that the Kuwait Investment Office played an important role in London’s financial district by investing in several vital sectors in the UK including real estate and infrastructure development. The baroness further affirmed that both nations were eager to pursue mutual ventures, including in the emerging dynamic industries and innovative technologies.

She also lauded the achievements of the Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA) in lessening the country’s dependence on oil revenues by creating huge investment portfolios in the UK and elsewhere, which in return would ensure diverse income for future generations. The Kuwait Investment Board (KIB) was established on 3 February 1953 to invest surplus oil revenue and reduce Kuwait’s reliance on a single finite resource. In 1965, Kuwait adopted a policy of diversification of assets and portfolios which led to the KIB being replaced by the Kuwait Investment Office.

The post Crown Prince attends 70th anniversary celebrations of KIO appeared first on TimesKuwait.

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