KUWAIT: In confirmation to the article published earlier regarding the Ministry of Interior’s announcement to designate four centers in addition to the border crossings to implement the biometric system, the Department of Public Relations and Security Media of the Ministry of Interior stated that, as part of the security authority’s keenness to secure the border crossings with the latest security means and technologies, and in accordance with the national project to protect the country’s security, the Ports and Borders Security Sector has activated the biometric system, which includes taking scans of the face and eyes and fingerprints of those entering the country through the Kuwaiti ports, reports Al-Rai daily. The department explained that the biometric system will be applicable for everyone who are 18 years and above, according to the procedures for issuing nationality in Kuwaiti law. All individuals – citizens, residents or visitors – arriving in Kuwait through the various ports will be subject to this system.
In the interest of the security authority to facilitate the citizens and travelers, four centers affiliated with the General Department of Criminal Evidence have been allocated with the cooperation of the General Department of Information Systems in Jahra, Ali Sabah Al-Salem, Farwaniya and West Mishref areas. They will be open daily for 24 hours.
The investigation management center will be open from 8:00am to 8:00pm to complete the biometric procedures. Biometric devices have also been provided by the General Department of Criminal Evidence at the air, land and sea border crossings.
Citizens and residents must book an appointment through the “Meta” platform, and visitors through the Ministry of Interior’s website https://meta.e.gov.kw/En/ to visit the centers designated to complete the biometric procedures (for those who wish to do it before traveling). Travelers through all kinds of ports are allowed to leave without completing the biometric procedures, as its work is limited to arrival (when returning from travel).
Work is underway to open new sites and centers, which will be announced in the near future. Meanwhile, ten days after its implementation, the new security system set up at the border crossings and centers designated by the Ministry of Interior is working efficiently, within the framework of the technical project aimed at controlling security and preventing the entry of wanted individuals and forgers, reports Al-Qabas daily quoting security sources.
They explained that a total of 65,000 citizens, Gulf nationals, residents and visitors have been entered in the biometric system since its launch on May 12 in all of the country’s land, air, and sea entry ports. All these individuals had returned to Kuwait after traveling overseas.
KUWAIT: The Direct Investment Promotion Authority (DIPA) has approved the establishment of Google Cloud services to operate directly in the Kuwaiti market without the need for a local agent, reports Al-Qabas daily. According to the decision No. 86/2023 issued by the DIPA director general, a company can be established by one person under the name of Google Cloud services, according to what was stipulated in the provisions of the companies Law No. 1/2016 and its executive regulations, and the provisions of Law No. 116/2013 for encouraging direct investment in Kuwait.
Kuwait ileum published the articles of incorporation of the new company wholly owned by Google Europe, the Middle East and Africa Unlimited.
The company’s capital is KD 600,000. The purposes of its establishment have been identified as the following:
1. Practicing computer programming activities.
2. Providing computer, substantive and technical services.
3. Computer facility management.
4. Data processing and web hosting.
5. Providing marketing consultancy.
In January, Google Cloud announced its entry into a strategic alliance with the Kuwait government to develop a roadmap for a comprehensive digital transformation program in government agencies and key state-owned companies. This alliance will allow the Kuwait government to benefit from Google Cloud’s innovative technology and expertise in the field of data, cybersecurity, and artificial intelligence to fulfill its commitment to implement digital transformation as one of its main national priorities in the coming years. Google Cloud will work within the framework of this strategic alliance with the Kuwait government to digitize services and increase the productivity of government employees.
Moreover, Google Cloud will partner with the government for implementing a number of digital transformation initiatives in the areas of healthcare, education, disaster recovery, and smart living. Google Cloud intends to establish a modern cloud area in Kuwait to meet the wide demand for its services. The new cloud computing area will support public sector institutions, businesses and startups in their digital transformation journey to contribute to achieving Kuwait’s ambitions to transform into a databased economy.
Google Cloud CEO Thomas Kurian said, “Our strategic contract supports the New Kuwait 2035 vision, which aims to transform Kuwait into a digital society and diversify its economy. We are very proud of our contribution in bringing the latest Google Cloud technologies to Kuwait to support the country in achieving its ambitions in the field of digital transformation. Our technologies contribute to the development of a rich technological system in Kuwait, which in turn will lead to the creation of important high-skilled job opportunities for the people of the country.”
Google Cloud will cooperate with the Central Agency for Information Technology to launch a national skills program. This program will enhance the skills of government employees in digital technologies, advanced data analytics, machine learning, artificial intelligence, and information security solutions provided by Google Cloud. The new strategic agreement is another significant milestone in the context of Google Cloud’s expansion in the Middle East, and reflects the company’s commitment to investing in the region’s digital future. The new cloud region will support the government of Kuwait and other Google Cloud customers in the country to manage digital business tasks efficiently, and enable them to securely store important data.
KUWAIT: The Kuwaiti Cabinet held Monday its weekly meeting, chaired by His Highness Prime Minister Sheikh Ahmad Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah. After the meeting, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs Dr. Khaled Al-Fadhel said: The Cabinet touched on the results of the participation of the Representative of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Nawaf Al- Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, His Highness the Crown Prince Sheikh Mishal Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah in the Arab 32nd Summit, which was held Saudi Arabia’s Jeddah.
The cabinet stressed that the State of Kuwait reaffirms its support for Arab League Council Resolution No. (8914), welcoming the final statement of the Jeddah meeting and the statement of the Amman meeting. It also expressed hope that Syria’s return to the Arab League will help end the crisis and the suffering of the Syrian people.
The Cabinet confirmed the dates for the Islamic Eid Al-Adha holiday, where state bodies nationwide will be closed starting from Arafat Day on Tuesday, June 27 until Sunday, July 2, with work resuming the following day on Monday. Discussing current developments around the world, the cabinet condemned the storming and ransacking of the residence of the Kuwaiti military office chief in the Sudanese capital Khartoum, in addition to the Qatari embassy, slamming these incidents as “acts of aggression” that target diplomatic missions.
The Cabinet went on to urge authorities in Sudan to take appropriate measures aiming to protect diplomats in the African country, while ensuring that such incidents do not occur again. (KUNA)
KUWAIT: The Kuwait Airways Corporation (KAC) has assured its customers that the partial strike planned by its employees on Monday from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. local time will not affect the passengers’ movement or the airport operation.
In a statement on Sunday, the national carrier affirmed that it is coordinating with the Ministry of Interior and the Directorate General of Civil Aviation to achieve this goal The KAC urged its customers to abide by their flight schedules and follow up the messages sent to them on any change. It also appealed to its customers to communicate with the KAC’s official channels for any inquiry.
KUWAIT: The Kuwait International Airport Customs Administration confirmed that every person entering or leaving the country through the various Kuwait ports must declare to the customs authorities the amount of currencies or financial instruments if the value exceeds 3,000 dinars or its equivalent in any foreign currency, reports Al-Jarida daily. The daily said the authorities have also stressed that no gold bars can be taken out of the country without customs document saying it will benefit the passenger and enable him/her to enter the country.
First Deputy Prime Minister and acting Minister of Interior and Defense Sheikh Talal Al-Khaled
KUWAIT: Security sources dispelled the concerns that many citizens and residents are having regarding the application of the biometric system at the border crossings and at the airport. They explained that the process aims to build a database at the Ministry of Interior, reports Al-Rai daily. They revealed that the ministry has installed 49 devices at the land, sea and air ports, in addition to two centers in Umm Al-Hayman and Jahra.
The sources explained that this step does not cause any obstacle for citizens or residents in terms of traveling or renewing residency. Requesting for fingerprint does not prevent travelers from leaving or entering the country. The ministry is currently creating a security database for those coming into the country, irrespective of whether they are citizens, residents or Gulf nationals, and even visitors. The next step will include residents of the country by taking their ten fingerprints and linking it to the process of the renewal of their residency. The sources said, “The application of the biometric feature system recorded accuracy, efficiency, high capacity, and great speed in showing results, and in collecting data for all people who underwent fingerprinting, as the country’s land, air, and sea ports witnessed severe crowding among those coming to take an eye, face and the finger prints.
The Department of Land and Air Ports has registered the largest number of travelers coming into the country, including citizens, residents and visitors, by taking their fingerprint, which in normal cases takes not more than three minutes. Whoever faces the problem of the fingerprint not being recognized either due to an injury or other reason, it is recorded in the system, and then the eye and the face is scanned, which takes about five minutes. However, in the event that the port witnesses a large congestion of travelers, only Kuwaitis will be allowed to enter.
They will be informed of the need to go to one of the two centers in the areas of Umm Al-Haiman and Jahra to take the fingerprint. These centers will work 24 hours a day to support the border crossings and reduce congestion, especially with the large travel movement expected during the summer period. The fingerprint system is applied to anyone who is 21 years old and above, that is, those born in 2002 or before. The fingerprint system does not apply to those under this age. The sensory fingerprint device sends complete data to the Criminal Evidence Department, to set up a special database so that the data becomes linked to the Gulf security system.
There are agreements within the GCC countries to exchange data of people who are wanted in security cases, or if the person is wanted in one Gulf country and is in another Gulf country, or someone with dual citizenship such as having two passports for two different countries. The aim is to detect counterfeiters, nab those wanted by security, and record the security data of the person subject to the fingerprint.
The Criminal Evidence Department, in coordination with the General Department of Information Systems, has installed 49 devices for scanning purposes in the land ports. Seven among them are in Salmi port, 8 in Nuwaiseeb, 4 in Abdali, two in the sea port, and 14 devices in the airport terminals 1,4 and 5, in addition to Sheikh Saad Al-Abdullah Airport and the Protocol Hall. Also, 14 devices have been set up in the Umm Al-Hayman and Jahra centers, which will operate 24 hours a day to receive citizens.”
The sources revealed that the workers in charge of the fingerprint devices have undergone a training course for the project, so that they can work on the devices with accuracy, professionalism and speed to avoid any delay for the travelers. It is worth highlighting that the Ministry of Interior had completed a project to develop and establish an integrated central biometric system for the State of Kuwait, which includes fingerprints, palm, face, iris and electronic signature for all individuals.
The project was supervised by the First Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Interior and Acting Minister of Defense Sheikh Talal Al-Khaled. He followed up the implementation of the final stages of the project, and was briefed on the components of the second phase represented in the project of updating the systems and infrastructure of the ports.
This project includes a comprehensive modernization of the implementation of entry and exit procedures for travelers and vehicles. It also includes the establishment of data centers for the security of the ports and the provision of automated devices to facilitate procedures by a mechanism for reading travel documents, verifying their authenticity and checking their security features, controlling cases of forgery, and matching them with the traveler’s vital features by checking fingerprints, face and iris of the eye, and checking local and international black lists before documenting travel. The project also includes conducting security checks on vehicles at the land ports to verify that they are not included in the lists of stolen and wanted vehicles locally and internationally, before documenting the movement of the vehicle.
KUWAIT: All travelers – citizens and residents – leaving with gold bars must obtain a statement regarding these bars from the Air Cargo Customs Department at the Kuwait Airport before traveling, within the framework of adherence to the applicable customs procedures, especially since it has been noted that travelers have left with large quantities of gold during the recent period, reports Al-Anba daily. The customs source said this phenomenon has only one meaning that the traveler who carries gold with them has converted the value of his money into gold, which must be dealt with by customs authorities in the context of laws in force to protect the traveler himself before anything.
The traveler is required to bring an invoice proving his ownership of the gold bars, in addition to his identification papers, and submit to the Air Cargo Customs Department one day before travel to prove what bars he will carry with him during the flight, and upon his arrival at the airport, he presents the issued statement to the customs inspectors and completes the journey with ease.
About the quantity limit to be disclosed, the source indicated that any gold bars or coins, regardless of their size, small or large, must be disclosed and a statement obtained, as they are not artefacts or jewelry for personal use, as the bars are known to be a conversion process from currency to gold, and then it must be re-monetized in another country, which must be subject to an audit that ensures the following:
1- Evidence of the traveler’s ownership of the gold, as his submission of the purchase invoice in the export statement is evidence that he obtained it properly and did not obtain it as a result of any illegal behavior.
2- Protection of travelers, both citizens and residents: Proving that citizens and residents carry these bars when traveling is one of the protection mechanisms for them, since they disclosed them directly, which proves their good faith.
Regarding the submission of a statement issued for the artifacts, the source confirmed that the gold artifacts that women carry for personal use when traveling, it is a relative matter. If they are in reasonable quantities that are used as adornment, then a statement by the female traveler is not required. But if the quantities that a woman wears are exaggerated in weight, then the matter here requires that she go through the normal procedures, including obtaining a statement issued for those artifacts.
The process of evaluating artifacts when traveling is subject to the discretion and experience of customs inspectors in Kuwait, who have the skills to enable them to estimate the situation for the traveler, which is something they deal with very high flexibility to ensure the application of the spirit of the law as well as the protection of the capabilities of citizens and residents.
Regarding large quantities of gold taken by travelers, the source indicated that the matter cannot be stopped, as Kuwait is an open market that has no restrictions, and it is part of facilitating the movement of trade and funds as long as it proceeds in the proper legal context and there are no suspicions that the movement of that gold may be linked to any activity other than legal.