Kuwait: Expats take out over 4 billion dinars in loans
Banking sources have estimated that expats have taken out a total of 4 billion Kuwaiti dinars in loans. Out of the 4 billion, 3.4 billion were installment loans for housing purposes, compared to the 622 million Kuwaiti dinars in consumer loans.
According to the latest statistics by the Central Bank of Kuwait, the total amount for personal loans taken out in Kuwait reached 16.6 billion Kuwaiti dinars. Majority of the personal loans were borrowed by Kuwaitis, as expats took out 24 per cent of the total amount borrowed.
A recent study showed that 40 per cent of the overall consumer loans in the country were taken out by expats, while the other 60 per cent were taken out by Kuwaitis. As for housing loans, Kuwaitis took the majority of the loans, around 72 per cent, compared to expats who took out 28 per cent.
The source added that the banks have strict rules, therefore they carefully select who to give out loans to. Majority of the banks prefer to lend to non-Kuwaitis working in the government sector and in large corporations, as their salaries are more likely guaranteed.
In addition, lending policies differ from bank to bank and some banks have a cap on the total percentage of loans they give out to expats, some set the cap at 20 per cent while otherwise have it at 10 per cent.