When you are thinking of Kuwait, many of the things that come to mind (and that are often portrayed by the media) are camels, flat vast deserts, and people living in tents. As a young Kuwaiti who has spent the majority of my life here, I can honestly say that is not true. Kuwait is actually a very modern, comfortable place to live, with exciting advancements in technology and transportation. Kuwaiti architecture, once leading the region in the 1970’s and 1980’s is coming back to it’s prime with exciting airport, opera house and cultural centre projects.
With a population of around 4 million, with only 1.2 million Kuwaiti citizens and estimates putting Kuwait anywhere from the top 3 to top 10 richest countries in the world, Kuwaitis like me are lucky to be able to enjoy a very luxurious lifestyle including fancy cars, expensive clothing, and thousands of dollars worth of decor in their homes. Kuwaitis like the best of what they can buy, respect quality and often look for British brand names as a mark of history, heritage and quality. Fashion is highly marketed in Kuwait, with many Kuwaiti friends of mine taking on the fashionista role. Always staying in style, and never being caught in something unfashionable. That extends to mobile phones, cars and accessories, not just fashion.
Trends are very quick to become popular here in Kuwait. As soon as someone posts something on social media (which is enormously popular) about a new object they bought or a new style of clothing, the trend takes off with teenagers here and will prove very big very fast. With the Kuwaiti youth’s high disposable income they have easy access to a large variety of brands and stores from all around the world. There are opportunities here for many businesses including the UK.
Due to the size of Kuwait, getting around is the 6,880 square miles is very easy, with most destinations almost always 20 minutes from where you are! Safe and cheap taxis scatter the city. Kuwait is undergoing a transformation to become better geared up to support and develop the business community. Various Kuwaiti entities are attempting to show how beneficial it is for international companies to start their business here. With all this to offer, I think you could do very well by starting your development into the Middle East in Kuwait.
I know if you are interested, the Kuwait British Business Centre would be glad to help kick-start your development into the Gulf and provide help on how to get yourself up and running in no time!
Jarrah Al-Qabandi is a business intern working with the Kuwait British Business Centre as part of the LOYAC Summer internship programme.
LOYAC is a nonprofit organization headquartered in Kuwait working towards the overall development of youth. LOYAC design and develop many programs to facilitate the professional development and personal growth of the youth, ages 6 to 30.