Recently published research from Business Monitor International, "Kuwait Defence & Security Report Q1 2013", is now available at Fast Market Research
Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 01/22/2013 -- BMI's Kuwait Defence & Security Report for Q1 2013 examines the country's strategic position in the Middle East and the wider world. It provides an overview of the contemporary geopolitical challenges facing the country, and the challenges it may face in the future.
The report examines the trends occurring in the country's current and future defence procurement, and the order of battle across its armed forces. The intention is to provide a clear and concise discussion of these issues. The report's general conclusion is that Kuwait remains vulnerable to regional instability, both in the form of the civil war in Syria, and also the possible consequences of a US/Israeli attack on Iran.
The ramifications of the Arab Spring also continue to have an impact on Kuwaiti politics. Despite being relatively democratic by regional standards, Kuwait has not been unaffected by the regional wave of political reforms. Large-scale protests have continued in Kuwait throughout 2012, and the failure of the Emir to overturn the country's electoral law has further emboldened the opposition. The country's prodemocracy activists want Kuwait to become a constitutional monarchy, with a government no longer dominated by the ruling family. The Emir is opposed to such a transition; however, he cannot overreach in his attempts to hold onto political power for fear of provoking even wider protests that could potentially lead to his downfall. He must decide soon whether to call new elections, even though the likely outcome will be a parliament dominated by the pro-democracy opposition.
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In Q3, with the threat of Iran's ballistic missile and nuclear weapons programmes looming large, the security debate among the Gulf Arab states was very much focused on collective missile defence. Having already spelled out its future military commitment to the region, the US is now pushing for the GCC countries to start integrating their separate missile defence systems to create a region-wide missile shield. Though defence co-operation has generally been quite basic even between allied states in the Gulf, momentum now appears to be building towards a new US-GCC missile defence framework. For US contractors that build missile defence systems - this chiefly includes Raytheon and Lockheed Martin - more lucrative orders are anticipated from the Gulf states.
Over the last quarter BMI has revised the following forecasts/views:
- With missile defence high on the agenda, Kuwait announced in late July that it had placed a U$4.2bn order for the latest Patriot missile system, the PAC-3. This will update its existing Patriot architecture.
- The latest anti-government protests and their implications are discussed in full, as well as the options now open to the embattled Emir.
- Recent developments in bilateral relations with neighbouring countries, chiefly Iraq and Iran, are also reviewed.
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