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Kuwait won’t let 100,000 of its residents travel unless they pay back dues to the state

Nov 29, 2012 6:39 am

Skift Take

The desire to travel is a powerful incentive to settle a debt, but countries should be cautious about using it as a rod to punish.

— Jason Clampet

Report: Social Media Customer Service in the Travel Industry

Kuwait could ban nearly 100,000 of its residents from leaving the country for failing to pay dues owed to the state, local newspaper reported, quoting a senior Justice Ministry official.

The policy is part of a government plan to collect nearly 12 million Kuwaiti dinars ($42.6 million) in fees for the use of state services, or as fines in felony and misdemeanor cases, Thursday’s edition of the Kuwait Times quoted Mohammad al-Duaij as saying.

From January 2, the state will automatically start blacklisting people who owe money, he said, adding that the ban would be imposed using a court order and come into effect 90 days later.

It could be lifted following payment of the dues or for humanitarian reasons, he said. Daily al-Rai newspaper said the ban applied to Kuwaiti nationals and foreign residents.

The Gulf Arab state has a population of 3.7 million people, around two-thirds of them foreigners. ($1 = 0.2817 Kuwaiti dinars)

Reporting by Sylvia Westall; Editing by Eric Walsh. Copyright (2012) Thomson Reuters. Click for restrictions.

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