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21 businesses join ‘Enhancing Services SMEs to Export’ programme

Macroeconomic performance indicators during first six months of this year witnessed decline due to pandemic — Hammouri

By JT - Aug 17,2020 - Last updated at Aug 17,2020

Minister of Industry, Trade and Supply Tareq Hammouri (centre) poses for a group photo during the signing ceremony of agreements between the Jordan Enterprise Development Corporation and small- and medium-sized enterprises on Monday (Photo courtesy of JEDCO)

AMMAN — The Jordan Enterprise Development Corporation (JEDCO) on Monday signed agreements with 21 small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that joined the “Enhancing Services SMEs to Export” programme that the corporation launched in December 2019 to upgrade the administrative capabilities and capacities of SMEs with a total cost of JD1.12 million.

JEDCO CEO Bashar Al Zou’bi and representatives of enterprises signed the agreements, according to a statement from the corportation.

Minister of Industry, Trade and Supply Tareq Hammouri said in his speech during the signing ceremony that macroeconomic performance indicators during the first six months of this year witnessed a decline due to the COVID-19 pandemic, with exports witnessing a drop by 5.5 per cent and the trade deficit decreasing by 27.6 per cent.

He also added that supporting the economic and industrial sectors is part of His Majesty’s assignment to the government aimed at expanding the base of industrial exporters, increasing the rates of exports and providing job opportunities during this current situation, stressing that technical support and administrative assistance programmes have achieved “positive” results.

The “Enhancing Services SMEs to Export” programme targets SMEs operating in the tourism and hospitality sectors, administrative, financial and legal consulting, training, healthcare, energy, engineering and architecture services and information technology in all governorates, which have high export readiness and have an export activity over one of the past three years.

Zou’bi stressed that this programme is a leading governmental project to support SMEs’ exports, focusing on high value-added products, pointing out that the programme will support 21 service SMEs operating within the targeted sectors exporting services to a number of new markets.

Zou’bi said that the programme aims at increasing and diversifying the Jordanian service sector products through supporting the export readiness of SMEs and their efforts aimed at internationalisation. It will encourage local services and increase their competitiveness for export, he added.

It also aims to prepare strategic plans for the targeted SMEs to increase their exports and enhance their role as a key driver in the overall development process by creating new jobs and improving the opportunities for their sustainability and growth, the statement said.

According to the preliminary data of the selected companies, the programme will contribute in creating 164 job opportunities and increase the value of export by JD7.140 million.

Zou’bi indicated that internal committees were formed for the initial administrative evaluation to ensure that the applications submitted to the programme were studied and evaluated with complete transparency, and the evaluation of this round included field visits for the first time.

JEDCO received 85 applications to benefit from the programme, 79 of which exceeded the administrative check, 21 companies were qualified for the grant and their export plans included innovative and pioneering ideas such as the use of technology and the development of new software and mobile phone applications, according to the statement.

 

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