You are here

Jordan way to sustainable development

Jul 17,2017 - Last updated at Jul 17,2017

The pivotal role of Jordan’s resilience was developed through a strong commitment to reform and dialogue, based on an inclusive, homegrown, sustainable process. 

Its pillars have been grounded in empowering Jordan’s citizens, creating new opportunities and raising the standard of living. 

Our path has been grounded in the tenets that distinguish Jordan: moderation, tolerance, openness, respect, inclusiveness, and a focus on a brighter future for all.

This has contributed to making Jordan an indispensable global partner in security, stability, peace building, inter/intra-faith and cross-cultural dialogue, while working to counter extremism and terrorism.

Additionally, Jordan has ensured a safe haven for people seeking refuge from regional turbulence whilst also ensuring the Kingdom continues to be a resilient investment hub, tourism destination and business gateway.

Globally, while prosperity has grown, poverty and youth unemployment have remained great challenges.

While there has been growth, inequality has been rising, in addition to pressures on planetary resources. The adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development has come at a pivotal moment; in the Arab region, development challenges have been compounded by unprecedented instabilities, conflicts and waves of refugees and displaced persons.

The influx of Syrian refugees and the protracted nature of regional crises (now in its seventh year) have pushed Jordan’s absorptive capacity to the limit, impacting all aspects of life in the country.

Despite facing unprecedented challenges, Jordan is continuing to strive for comprehensive and evolutionary reforms that sustain resilience, whilst increasing prosperity of our citizens and turning challenges into opportunities.

On the track of political reform, Jordan is improving upon electoral and political laws with each election cycle.

After holding the 13th parliamentary elections in August 2016, the country is preparing to hold its next municipal elections in August 2017, together for the first time, it is also holding decentralisation elections to elect governorate councils.

This is part of the drive towards decentralisation and continuous work to increase citizen participation in national decision making processes and in determining local development.

As part of efforts to enhance transparency, good governance and fight corruption, a National Integrity Charter has been adopted.

Jordan is also the first Arab country to join the Open Government Partnership.

Such reforms build upon recent efforts that saw the amendment of one third of the Constitution, the establishment of new democratic institutions such as the Constitutional Court and the Independent Election Commission, and the strengthening of the judiciary system through the Judicial Independence Law.

A comprehensive judicial reform process is under way to implement outcomes of the Royal Committee for Developing the Judiciary and Enhancing the Rule of Law.

On the track of economic reform, in 2015, Jordan launched a new 10-year socioeconomic blueprint for the country.

“Jordan 2025: A National Vision and Strategy” works towards developing a prosperous and inclusive economy, while deepening reforms and inclusion.

Jordan has been sustaining macroeconomic and fiscal stability as part of the national fiscal and economic reform programme supported by the IMF.

Moreover, Jordan has been adopting a new generation of economic laws to enhance investments, the business environment and competitiveness as part of a continuous improvement approach.

This year, given unprecedented negative spillover from regional crises and refugees burdens, Jordan adopted, under the “Jordan 2025” vision, the Jordan Economic Growth Plan 2018-2022 to refocus efforts on the inclusive growth agenda outlining must-do doing business reforms, structural and sectoral reforms and much needed capital expenditure programmes that will be implemented by maximising Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) and private investments.

On the development planning track, the government is using its national executive development programmes tool (EDPs) — which are multi-year integrated national government development plans, crafted using a participatory approach — to integrate and track development, sectoral plans and strategies under “Jordan 2025”.

Jordan’s multi-year national development framework also includes development programmes for each governorate as part of the decentralisation drive, based on a participatory, bottom-up consultative approach to address the needs and regional disparities among governorates, based on their competitive features, whilst targeting poverty and unemployment challenges and putting in place investment maps for each region.

Jordan is proceeding along the humanitarian track, acting as a model in dealing with the refugee crisis, both regionally and globally.

In many ways, Jordan has turned the refugee challenge into an economic opportunity, based on the Jordan Compact.

However, the success of this model requires sustained and scaled up support from key partners of the Jordan Compact and the successive Jordan Response Plans (JRPs).

These JRPs form a development complement to national EDPs, ensuring adherence to the charted path of comprehensive reforms and achieving sustainable development goals.

As the Kingdom continues to host scores of refugees on behalf of the international community, we must remember Jordan’s call for the improvement of eligibility criteria for vulnerable middle-income countries, facilitating access to development assistance and highly concessional and innovative financing tools.

Donor countries should continue to implement the commitments made under the Jordan Compact adopted in London in 2016 and in the Jordan Output Document adopted in Brussels in 2017.

Donors must sufficiently fund the Jordan Response Plans; sustain support to the Global Concessionary Financing Facility that Jordan pioneered with the World Bank to provide sufficient concessionary financing to middle income countries hosting refugees; increase commitments to resettle refugees in their countries, provide preferential concessional loans, debt swaps, or debt relief; and soften the terms and conditions for both existing and new loans.

Building on the work of achieving the Millennium Development Goals and active participation in shaping post 2015 dialogue, the 2030 Agenda is one of Jordan’s top priorities.

The Kingdom has developed an inclusive roadmap to ensure strong implementation.

To ensure enhanced coherence, it was essential to utilise existing frameworks, avoiding duplication and redundancy in this approach.

In this aim, Jordan will be using the national development planning institutional system and mechanisms, mainstreaming SDGs as part of successive EDPs and restructuring the Higher National Committee for Sustainable Development to act as the body overseeing the implementation of the agenda.

This National Committee will have a coordination committee with 18 working groups, including two new working groups developed to focus on gender, as well as freedom and human rights.

Under “Jordan 2025”, the current EDP has been factoring in the requirements to achieve the SDGs to ensure harmony between goals, targets and indicators. This has been achieved with the active participation of civil society organisations, the private sector, academia, women, youth, local communities and councils.

In preparation for the voluntary national review, Jordan has encouraged the participation of all stakeholders. Youth are Jordan’s most dynamic citizens, and they must play an active role in shaping the country’s future.

The empowerment of women is another crucial prerequisite for sustainable development, and together with youth, represent priority targets under the SDGs and the most critical cross-scutting themes.

Adequately financing the achievement of the SDGs is critical, and Jordan emphasises the importance of the Addis Ababa declaration.

Increasing ODA to 1 per cent of gross national income from wealthier nations by 2020 is integral to finance the agenda for least developed and middle-income countries alike.

Jordan is working on tapping into and leveraging traditional and non-traditional financial sources, including: ODA, public and private; PPPs; Islamic financing; and sub-national, national and global finance to support long-term investments favourable to the agenda.

These and other developments will make use of the open trade policy, while working on increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of our tax system and public expenditure through the adoption of a public investment management framework, improving the ease of doing business, and supporting MSMEs and the competitive investment climate conducive to entrepreneurship and innovation.

Finally, Jordan is working with its key donors, IFIs, and UN agencies, collaborating to begin “delivering as one” in 2018.

The development agenda is focused on shared prosperity; burden sharing cannot continue to be disproportionate.

Despite current hurdles, the world can continue to count on Jordan’s determination to safeguard development achievements whilst ensuring an inclusive, resilient safe haven and oasis of stability for its citizens and the world.

 

 

The writer is minister of planning and international cooperation. He contributed this article to The Jordan Times.

up
23 users have voted.

Comments

When we were English composition classes while attending college back way when our professor told us to write from the standpoint of the reader not for our standpoint. I read this article twice-- written by his excellency our planning minister and I can hardly discern half of it.How on earth the average Jordanian citizen reading the only English newspaper in the country will be able to fathom what was written in it.Grant you economic issues can be very complicated issues still, it is the author's job to simplify and make as understandable as it can be made so anyone with a rudimentary knowledge of the English language can understand it the first time around.Jawad Al Anani writes in English a weekly column for the Jordan Times. All his articles are very entertaining, well written and easy to understand. Yousef Mansour wrote economic columns in English for many years, all his columns are well understood. I don't see the need for over exaggerating the rhetoric for writing a column for daily newspaper. This column by Mr. Fakhoury needs to be reworked , revised, and heavily edited to fit the Jordan Times articles style. I would fully understand if this writing is part of a research or a chapter of a book then it will gain my approval but as a weekly column the amalgam of vocabulary is disproportionate to the understanding of the reader.

with all due respect, where is this so called empowering citizens, and creating new opportunities? the government stopped employment since 2008 until now. the working employees are due for retirement, many others holding high posts are already collecting retirement, where are those opportunities sir? no in truth there is nothing but impressing and depriving the citizens of Jordan. these government is incompetent and/or unqualified to carry on the needs of Jordanians and so behind when it comes to his majesty's vision. and expectations.

Add new comment

CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
10 + 5 =
Solve this simple math problem and enter the result. E.g. for 1+3, enter 4.

Newsletter

Get top stories and blog posts emailed to you each day.