September 27, 2021

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Secretary Blinken Travels to Kuwait to Advance Regional Security and Economic Ties

17 min read

Office of the Spokesperson

Our partnership during the Gulf War laid the foundation for our relationship, and our countries have grown ever closer in the years that have followed.  Today, our educational, cultural, political, and economic ties are stronger than they have ever been.

 – Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken, February 25, 2021

Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken will travel on July 28 to Kuwait City where he will meet with His Highness the Amir of Kuwait Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, Crown Prince Sheikh Mishal Al-Ahmed Al-Sabah, Prime Minister Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled Al-Hamad Al-Sabah, Speaker of the National Assembly Sheikh Marzouq al Ghanem, and Foreign Minister Sheikh Dr. Ahmed Nasser Al-Mohammed Al-Sabah to continue discussions on military cooperation, growing bilateral opportunities for trade and investment, expanded educational and cultural exchanges, advancing regional security and human rights, and other issues underscoring the importance of our 60 years of diplomatic ties.

Strength Built Over 30 Years Since the Gulf War

  • This year, the United States and Kuwait marked the 30th anniversary of Operation Desert Shield and the liberation of Kuwait from the occupation of Saddam Hussein, as well as 60 years of diplomatic ties.
  • Kuwait is a major non-NATO ally of the United States. Kuwait and the United States are parties to a bilateral Defense Cooperation Agreement, and U.S. forces are located at various bases in Kuwait. The United States supports Kuwait’s continued efforts to modernize the Kuwaiti armed forces, and to increase interoperability with U.S. and allied forces.
  • Nearly 10,000 Kuwaitis studied at U.S. universities and English language institutes in the 2019–2020 academic year, the third-largest number of students from the Middle East/North Africa region.
  • Bilateral trade reached $4.5 billion in 2019. We support a transparent regulatory framework and processes to attract businesses and foreign direct investment to Kuwait, including from the United States.
  • The United States is helping Kuwait create a strong cybersecurity framework, transparent data security, and policies to help attract trusted global telecommunications and information technology companies.
  • The United States and Kuwait continue to strengthen bilateral cooperation including in defense and security, trade and investment, customs and border protection, consular services, human rights, and educational and cultural exchanges through the U.S.-Kuwait Strategic Dialogue.

 An Important Partnership on Regional Outreach

  • The United States appreciates Kuwait’s efforts to facilitate greater cooperation between Gulf Cooperation Council countries and to mediate regional disputes. Kuwait has provided generous support to the COVAX Facility, underscoring the import role Kuwait plays in advancing humanitarian support in the region.
  • Kuwait and the United States belong to several of the same international organizations, including the United Nations, International Monetary Fund, World Bank, the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS, and World Trade Organization. Kuwait is a participant in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization’s Istanbul Cooperation Initiative.
  • Kuwait participates in several intergovernmental organizations related to counterterrorism including the Global Counterterrorism Forum, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, and the Global Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism. Kuwait is also a member of the U.S.-led Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS.

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