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Shukran Kuwait- A place I can call home

M.R. Raghu, CFA Monday, February 22, 2021
Shukran Kuwait- A place I can call home

All good things should come to an end and so was my stay in Kuwait. A 15-year long journey ended when we decided to relocate to Chennai due to personal reasons. It is truly a wonderment to see how time flies. I know many Indian families that have stayed on for generations and continue to do so. This is why I call Kuwait as “home”.

Like all other countries, Kuwait has pros and cons but in the end, the experience of living here has always been very positive. During my stay in Kuwait, I had the honor and privilege to work for one of the finest companies in Kuwait (Kuwait Financial Center or Markaz) as Head of Research. I will be continuing my association with Markaz as Economic Advisor and CEO of Marmore (a research subsidiary of Markaz based in Chennai) and hence the bond with Kuwait will continue.

During my stay in Kuwait, I also had other shades of experience as a speaker, blog writer, etc. There must be something that must have kept me in Kuwait this long and one of them is the warmth of friends and colleagues. Kuwait is a land that is predominantly comprised of foreign nationals, especially Indians. Kuwait works with foreigners for nation building and service delivery. It makes them feel at home and at the same time provides them with financial opportunity to save and remit back home. While there are many models of other countries working with immigrant population, the Kuwait model is unique where several nationalities co-exist for generations to build this country. The huge Indian diaspora has also socially progressed over the decades thanks to the precious foreign exchange that they earn. I must thank Kuwait on my behalf and on behalf of all my fellow citizens for making all our lives better.

However, Kuwait is also going through many challenges on the demographic and labor market front. In the past, the vast amount of semi-skilled and low-skilled people from Asian countries were a necessity for infrastructure building needs. Kuwait is now moving from that to a knowledge-based economy with a need to create and provide jobs to its nationals. Such a transition will necessitate a change from high volume low/semi-skilled expat needs to low volume high skilled expat needs. India is at a sweet spot to fulfill this emerging need as well. While India predominantly imports oil from Kuwait and exports food items, our trade relations can improve and transform to other areas of knowledge economy with India’s leadership in science and technology and the attendant human resources it can provide. India can directly contribute in the area of ICT, skill development, industrial training institutes, research initiatives, and other innovations. This will open up opportunities for high-skilled Indian engineers, doctors, and technicians including software engineers to assist Kuwait in its pursuit to transform into a knowledge economy. For expats that are already working in Kuwait, upskilling in these areas can sweetly position them for lucrative employment opportunities in Kuwait.

This is more a thank you note than a good-bye note. Wishing you all a safe and rewarding stay in Kuwait.

M R Raghu is currently CEO of Marmore Mena Intelligence, a research subsidiary of Kuwait Financial Center (Markaz), a leading asset management company based in Kuwait. 22 years he was in the Gulf region, focussing Kuwait, Riyadh and Bahrain. Prior to this stint in the Gulf region, he worked with several leading institutions based in India including the largest mutual fund Unit Trust of India and the largest engineering consultancy MECON.

He provides regular strategic research opinions on markets, economy, sectors and other business angles through various blogs, columns and speeches. He is specialized in big picture research with a keen interest in asset management, investment research, capital markets and GCC.

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Express your comment on this article

Sunday, February 28, 2021
well describe yes 100% true 2nd home for the 960,000 Indian Expatriates leaving happily in Kuwait, God blessed this country always

Swaminathan R
Thursday, February 25, 2021
Well written Raghu. Proud to be associated with you. Happy staying in Singara Chennai.

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