Kuwait banks' NPL at 4%

Sheik Salem Al Sabah (SUPPLIED)

The Kuwaiti banks' level of non-performing loans (NPLs) does not exceed four per cent of their total credit portfolio and the lenders have allocated ample provisions for bad loans, the country's central bank governor told Al Arabiya television station.

"The percentage of non-performing loans to the total credit portfolio of banks in Kuwait doesn't exceed four per cent," Sheik Salem Al Sabah told the Dubai-based television in an interview published on the station's Alaswaq website.

"Necessary provisions have been taken to cover most of these non-performing loans," he added.

Kuwaiti banks, like elsewhere in the Gulf region, boosted provisions in 2009 to guard against possible defaults from individuals and corporates weighed down by the fallout from the global financial crisis.

Kuwait's banks have exposure to two troubled Saudi family conglomerates, Saad Group and Ahmad Hamad Al Gosaibi Bros & Co that owe regional and international banks billions of dollars.

Separately, Kuwait's economy is expected to rebound in 2010 from economic contraction in 2009 and post growth due to the government's ramp up of spending.

"The gross domestic product will witness positive growth with the increase in government spending in various projects," said Al Sabah.

 

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