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Is Kuwait A Third World Country?


First of all the definition and the description about third world has so many parameters to measure them appropriately. Generally third world countries are considered as technologically less developed, having economies dependent on exporting of primary products or raw materials to the developed countries in return of the finished product from them. Third world countries are also characterized by high rate of illiteracy, growth of population, disease and instability in the governance system. Another way of classification is based on the Bandung conference. Most of the participants of that conference were from Asia, Africa and Eastern Europe led to the establishment of the nonaligned movement. The situation of oil rich gulf countries of Asia is very much different from definition and description stated above. These countries emerged as strong economies solely based on the petroleum industry.

Kuwait is a constitutional emirate with one of the highest income rates based on its world’s sixth largest oil reserve situated in the Middle Eastern part of Asia. The currency of Kuwait is also one of the highest valued currencies of the world. If the definition of the first world is considered in the light of governance system, Kuwait belongs to the third world because of its emirate system. It is not a fully developed democracy followed by most of the European countries and USA. But the legal system of Kuwait is modeled after the French legal system which is largely secular. In the view of legal freedom, Kuwait is considered as the most secular country in the entire gulf region. Kuwait is known for its press freedom, constitutionalism. Basically the economy of Kuwait is based on petroleum and fertilizers and the advancement of technology mostly related to oil exploration and its related industries has become predominant after the gulf war. After the gulf war there were extensive efforts made to reform the economy and build the infrastructure of the country. The World Bank has defined some countries as high income OECD members, where OECD stands for organization for economic cooperation and development. Kuwait is in the high income list but not in the high income members list. The international monetary fund defined the OECD members as advanced economies. This list has the OECD high income members and few developed democracies. But Kuwait is not enlisted here also. So Kuwait can be considered as a third world country but with a very high income rate.

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