Markaz launches its initiative in economic policy alternatives toward sustainable development


In the first publication of its economic policy research series, Kuwait Financial Centre S.A.K. “Markaz” has recently published a policy research titled “Towards Sustainable Economic Development: Tools to Strengthen and Support the State of Kuwait’s Private Sector.” The research examines the role of the private sector in the Kuwaiti economy. It also recommends policies and steps the State can take to achieve Kuwait’s unfulfilled economic potential by moving forward on a path of sustainable development and inclusive growth.

Foundationally, the research suggests that the State develops strategies that aim to: (1) increase business entry, foster competition, and reduce rents; (2) reform institutions to level the playing field and reduce illicit rent-seeking behavior; and (3) foster open policy making based on inclusive partnerships with the private sector.

Markaz has stepped in with the initiative of conducting research in public policy in collaboration with leading experts in this area, amidst high global oil prices, which renders the need for formulating credible public policy that focuses on sustainable development a key initiative. Markaz believes that such initiatives will enable Kuwait through a sustainable development path by introducing economic substance that aims to advocate public debates and address the formidable social transformation of the region as the GCC region rarely had serious advice on public policy matters – other than commercial advisory studies. The Markaz Economic Policy Research differentiates itself from others by being a policy research emanating from Kuwait, not for profit, independent, and non-partisan.

Mr. Raghu Mandagolathur, Head of Research at Markaz said: “As the Middle East region, especially Gulf States, enter a high growth-high spending phase orchestrated by the government as the key stakeholder, the role of on-ground independent public policy research becomes sine-quo-non.  The current lack of such bodies as well as the fragmented nature of the industry provides a classic opportunity to create environment conducive to the establishment of such initiatives and Markaz is keen to play a role in that process. Moreover, an ambitious five year development plan was announced in March 2010 creating major political and economic debates on its feasibility.  Currently, Kuwait faces several challenges in the area of demography, economic diversification and fiscal structure.”

Mr. Mandagolathur pointed out that Markaz has initiated its economic policy research in cooperation with leading institutions.  “We signed an MOU for cooperation with IFRI, a leading Paris-based research institution that specializes in energy studies; also, we commissioned studies with policy research scholars from the London School of Economics and from Princeton University in the United States.”

About Kuwait Financial Centre “Markaz”

Kuwait Financial Centre S.A.K. 'Markaz', established in 1974 with total assets under management of over KD 865 million as of December 31st, 2011, is the leading and award winning asset management and investment banking institution in the Arabian Gulf Region. Markaz is listed on the Kuwait Stock Exchange (KSE) since 1997 under ticker Markaz.