AMMAN –– Kuwait is expected to pay its $1.25 billion contribution to the Gulf fund to Jordan within two months, Finance Minister Suleiman Hafez told the Jordan News Agency, Petra, Sunday.
He explained that the financial assistance will be directed to the Kingdom through the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development (KFAED) after the Kuwaiti government completes the necessary measures.
The Gulf fund was allocated by the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) during last year’s summit to support development projects in the Kingdom.
Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Kuwait and Qatar decided to extend $5 billion over a five-year period to support development schemes in Jordan. Each GCC nation will pay $1.25 billion.
Hafez said the Kuwaiti grant will be allocated to finance capital projects included in the 2012 state budget.
He made the remarks on the sidelines of a loan guarantee agreement signed between the government and KFAED on Sunday, under which the Kuwaiti fund will extend a loan worth JD37 million to finance the third phase of the expansion project of the Samra Power Generation Company, according to a Ministry of Finance statement.
The loan carries 3 per cent interest annually and will be paid back in 20 years with a grace period of four years, Hafez said in the statement.
The expansion project includes the establishment of two power generation units, run by natural gas and diesel, with a capacity of 100 megawatts each.
Abdul Wahab Al Bader, director general of KFAED, signed the agreement on behalf of Kuwait, the statement said.
Also on Sunday, Prime Minister Fayez Tarawneh stressed Jordan’s determination to attract new investments and create a suitable environment to guarantee their success.
He made the remarks during a follow-up meeting with Bader, during which talks focused on means to enhance economic and commercial cooperation between the two countries.
Bader said Kuwait has received the projects presented by Jordan that would benefit from the $5 billion Gulf fund to Jordan, noting that a delegation will visit the Kingdom to determine the best ways to finance these projects.
Tarawneh listened to a briefing on the talks held on Sunday between the Kuwaiti official and Hafez on the mechanisms needed to employ the Gulf grant to Jordan.
Bader also met with Planning and International Cooperation Minister Jafar Hassan and discussed means for the fund to finance the establishment of a terminal for liquefied gas in Aqaba.
During his visit to Kuwait last month, Tarawneh met with representatives of the fund and highlighted investment opportunities in Jordan, urging the KFAED to establish an office in Jordan to boost cooperation.