STATE OF KUWAIT
Brief history of the postal service:
Kuwait has a very old history of postal services, which began in 1775 and were partly organized in 1879.
A decision to have a post office in Kuwait in 1904 by British political officer did not materialize until 1915. However, the Political agency transacted postal business including money orders dispatched from Kuwait. The post office, which opened on January 1st, 1915 in the political agent’s office building continued until 1929.
As was the practice in those days, British India postage stamps were also used in Kuwait, which included King George V, single star water-mark issues of 1911-1922, and Indian postal stationary items, both without overprints. The cancellers used in the beginning, however, spelt the name of the country as Koweit.
In 1923, British India stamps of George V overprinted KUWAIT were sold, of values ˝ anna to 10 rupees. Following introduction of air mail services, India issued a set of six airmail stamps, of these the 2a, 3a, 4s, and 6a values were overprinted in 1933 for use in Kuwait.
After the partition of British India in August 1947, the post office remained under the Karachi circle, but of the Pakistan postal department. In April 1948 the Kuwait post office, like its counterparts in the other Gulf states came under the British Postal Agency, and the sub-post office was raised to the status of the main post office. The Kuwait post office now began to use overprinted and surcharged great Britain stamps of King George VI. The overprint read “KUWAIT” and the values were surcharged in annas and rupees of the Indian currency.
Kuwait set up an independent postal system in 1958, when it also issued a set of three stamps of 5np, 10np, and 40np (naye paise of the Indian currency) values of February 1st. These were Kuwait’s first “local” issues for use on internal mail. On the same day the first state post office was opened at Safat. The British Postal Agency’s post offices continued to function. Great Britain stamps were withdrawn on February 1st, 1959, on which date the Kuwait government took over its entire postal service.
The new administration declared the “local” stamps valid for external use, and issued its own set of 13 stamps valued up-to ten rupees. The British types of cancels were discontinued and in their place bilingual cancellers were introduced.
Kuwait became a member of the Universal Postal Union in February 1960. The Government of Kuwait cancelled the Indian stamps and issued its own stamps in its currency of fils and dinars. By 1966 no less than 25 post offices were functioning in the country. Now, Kuwait has one of the most efficiently run postal service in the Gulf.
Kuwait Philatelic Bureau address:
Ministry of Communication
Post Sector – Philatelic Bureau
P. O. Box: 888
Postal Code: 13009
State of Kuwait
List of Participants in the Conference and the Exhibition:
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