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Jordan seeks economic integration with regional, global partners — PM

By JT - May 10,2018 - Last updated at May 10,2018

AMMAN — Prime Minister Hani Mulki on Thursday said that Jordan is moving towards an economy that is open and integrated with regional and international economies, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported. 

The measures Jordan is taking aim to eventually enable the country to absorb the influx of young Jordanians into the labour market and face the challenges generated by regional crises.

During a session on investment opportunities in Jordan at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development’s (EBRD) 27th annual meeting and business forum held at the Dead Sea area, Mulki said that Jordan is becoming a hub for trade and investment in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.

Jordan has promising investment and trade opportunities that include establishing manufacturing facilities, international contracting and building logistic centres, Mulki continued.

He added that the Kingdom can be an “ideal” platform for companies that seek to take part in reconstruction and infrastructure projects in war-torn regional countries.

Jordan’s strategy depends on benefitting from free trade agreements signed with several countries that enable Jordanian products to enter international markets such the US, Europe and Africa, the premier said. 

Efforts by the government to improve the business environment have resulted in a jump by 15 ranks on Ease of Doing Business Index, and “we expect more progress”, he added.

Mulki noted that the foreign investment flow in the Kingdom in 2017 increased by 7.2 per cent, expecting that to be reflected on economic growth.

EBRD’S President, Suma Chakrabarti said that he bank has achieved success in the Kingdom in the past six years, reaching investments worth 1 billion euros.

Chakrabarti added an investment map worth $2.6 billion has been drawn up with the planning and international cooperation minister. The bank’s contribution to the map will be $1 billion in infrastructure projects (see separate story).

The outcomes of the bank’s projects in Jordan should not be measured by figures only, but by the way the investments change lived, enhance the role of the private sector and support Jordan’s efforts in hosting the refugees, Chakrabarti said.

He said that Jordan has become a leading country in the region in the field of renewable energy, noting that the contribution of renewable energy to the overall energy mix has increased from 1 per cent in 2010 to 10 per cent currently and will reach 30 per cent by 2020.

For his part, State Minister for Investment Affairs Muhannad Shehadeh said that Jordan’s investment strategy focuses on human resources, noting that Jordan aims to evolve into a hub to provide logistics for multinational companies in the region.

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