COUNTRY NAME: Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan
LAND AREA: 89,000km2
POPULATION: 6,4 million (2010 est.)
CURRENCY: 1 Jordanian Dinar (JOD) = 1.000 Fils; 1 EUR = 0.96 JOD (Nov. 2010)
MAIN CITIES: Amman (capital), Aqaba, Irbid, Zarqa, Karak, Maan
NATIONAL DAY: 25 May – Indepence Day
TIME ZONE: Standard Time is GMT + 2
In the last decade, the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan has sustained vast development achievements that brought qualitative stride at all economic, social and political sectors. These results were also made through the relentless efforts of His Majesty King Abdullah II Ibn Al-Hussein who spares no effort in the process of building modern Jordan and in achieving a better future for the Jordanian people.
Jordan has attained many accomplishments in respect of economic development and growth rates, as well as the support of the market absorption of labor force. The current and future economic plans aim at the redistribution of the development returns to all the Kingdom’s regions in away that will better serve the development needs of them. In this respect and under a Royal guidance, the government established economic and development areas all around the Kingdom with the aim of attracting local and foreign investments and establishing projects that will absorb labor force in these regions.
Jordan realizes the importance of continuing the thrust of its reform agenda. Transforming Jordan into a modern knowledge-based economy with increased productivity and employment continues to be at the core of Jordan’s long-term development vision as articulated in the “Kuluna Al Urdun” (We are all Jordan) initiative, which builds on past achievements and previous reform initiatives, including “Jordan First” and the “National Agenda”. “Kuluna Al Urdun”, spearheaded by His Majesty King Abdullah II Ibn Al-Hussein, was developed through extensive participation from all segments of the Jordanian society in order to build national consensus on a comprehensive unified vision and policy actions to support a bold reform and modernization of Jordan’s economic, institutional and political infrastructure. It also envisions additional investments to bring about improved living conditions, increased job opportunities, and upgraded social services to all Jordanians. Young people are one of Jordan’s national priorities, greatest asset, and hope for the future. Youthful energies are being directed towards serving the community, and organized in group frameworks through a number of initiatives aimed at tapping their intellect, creativity and aspirations. In order to ensure the active participation of youth, Jordan has committed itself towards mobilizing all stakeholders (government agencies, civil society, national and international institutions, private sector) case in point is the “National Strategy for Youth”, and “We are All Jordan” Youth initiatives.
With access to over one billion consumers at the cross roads of three continents, Jordan is situated at the heart of the region that interconnects three continents. Its location and excellent transportation network make it an ideal base of operations for companies seeking export to countries and regions which Jordan has bilateral and multilateral trade agreements with, thereby expanding their market to over one billion consumers in Europe, North America and the Middle East. As well, its stable political and economic environments enhance the Kingdom’s suitability as a base from which to supply such large markets. Jordan is home to a competitive and vibrant economy that has achieved constantly high growth. The investment promotion law in Jordan offers a number of benefits and incentives to investors in the key sectors of the economy, including industry, agriculture, hospitals, hotels, leisure and recreational compounds, Maritime transport, railways, pipeline transportation and distribution services for water, gas, and petroleum derivatives as well as their exploitation, conventions and exhibition centers, call centers. Jordan’s economy offers special opportunities in fast rising sectors that include pharmaceuticals, minerals, information and communication technology ICT, Dead Sea products, textiles and apparel, tourism, real estate and automotive industry. Jordan Investment Board (JIB) is a governmental body that was established by means of the investment promotion law of 1995 and the investment law of 2003, JIB is a world class agency entrusted with promoting Jordan as a unique destination for foreign direct investment and sustaining domestic investment to achieve economic prosperity in the Kingdom. JIB is at the disposal of all investors seeking assistance in their business and investment needs. The Government of Jordan has implemented a bold economic liberalization initiative through transformation of Aqaba, the Kingdom’s only port city and a surrounding area of 375 km2, into the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority (ASEZA). ASEZA is a duty free zone that is successfully attracting substantial foreign and domestic private investment. It offers advanced infrastructure and logistics systems, quality lifestyle, and a superior business environment. Aqaba Development Corporation (ADC), inaugurated at the beginning of 2004, is the central development company for ASEZA. It is a private shareholding company owned jointly by the government and the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority (ASEZA) with the mission to implement the ASEZA Master Plan in a manner that ensures integrated development by maximizing public-private partnerships. The South Industrial Zone (SIZ) is one of the principal investment opportunities within ASEZA. Comprising some 12 square kilometres of still vacant readily developable land, it encompasses and surrounds the existing heavy industrial district. It is also directly adjacent to the site where the new Aqaba seaport will be built over the coming five to seven years. Already present are the marine terminals for import and export of dry bulk and liquid bulk commodities. The development concept for the SIZ is to build an industrial area that provides for the development of existing industries in an orderly manner, develops related downstream industries and provides a highly competitive world-class industrial park to enable the development of new industries. The SIZ concept plans for industrial clusters which meet the demands of existing and new industries; provides centralized grouping of services such as cooling water, pipelines and conveyors where possible; and plans for inter-modal transport centers to enable rapid transfer of goods and people. The SIZ dedicates part of the area to anchor an integrated agro-chemical/fertilizer cluster, using the competitive advantage of Jordan and its neighbors in phosphate, potash and natural gas resources as well as taking advantage of existing fertilizer industry and deepwater ports both existing and under-development. The SIZ has also dedicated remaining areas for heavy chemical industries, supporting industries and future industrial expansion. The King Hussein Bin Talal Development Area (KHBTDA) in Mafraq – situated 60 km northeast of the capital Amman at the Nexus of a modern highway network
connecting Jordan, Syria, Iraq and Saudi Arabia – is strategically positioned to function as an industrial center and inland port stretching across 21 square kilometres with an adjacent functional airport and a future railway system. Through the unique combination of its geographic location, public sector commitment, and a legal and regulatory framework underpinned by the progressive and robust development areas law, the KHBTDA is an unparalleled infrastructure, industry and logistics investment opportunity. With regional markets exceeding 300 million inhabitants, the potential to connect overland routes with access to major regional ports, and the planned conversion of the adjacent King Hussein Airbase and to a mixed use airport, the sight has the potential to become not only a leading location for industrial production, but also a regional transportation hub for inward movement of goods from throughout the region, and indeed the world.
The manufacturing sector comprises a great deal of the industrial activity that will drive investment demand into the KHBTDA. The Mafraq Development Corporation (MDC) vision for the sight is to attract investment from a variety of light and medium industrial sectors, with the aim of serving major regional export markets as well as Jordanian domestic demand. Sectors with potential to drive development include: food and beverage; pharmaceutical and medical supplies; light chemicals; and a wide range of other manufactured products. Jordan has already established itself as a serious exporter to regional markets, and its leading producers are already looking beyond, to the EU and the US, to export high quality foods, and the Jordan valley is poised to emerge as a producer of world-class fruits and vegetables. The Pharmaceutical and Medical Supply sector together represent one of Jordan’s premier industries, surpassed only by garment sector in terms of both total output and exports. With pharmaceuticals exports exceeding USD 442.4 million in 2007, Jordan is the MENA regions largest Arab exporter and a growing producer of consumable medical supplies. The demand analysis exams trade flows in a wide range of manufacturing sectors under the broad heading of other manufactured products, including: furniture and furniture components; electrical machinery and electronics; fabricated plastic products; and packaging.
ICT & Health Sector
ICTs growth in Jordan has surpassed the high rates witnessed in the region, with many firms headquartered in Jordan and maintaining project offices in regional markets. Jordan’s prominent reputation in health care, based on advanced systems and highly regarded physicians, is attracting 100,000 international patients annually.
Jordan and most of its neighbors signed the International Agreement on Rail Development in the Arab Mashreq, which defined minimum technical standards and identified priorities routes for linking the economies of the region. The network within Jordan is fully consistent with the standards of and priorities specified in the agreement, as is the work is underway in neighboring countries. All of Jordan’s neighbors have plans for standard gauge rail development to the Jordan border.
Services account for 73% of Jordanian GDP in 2005. Jordan commercial services balance with the world has been positive until 2000. Jordanian leading export services sectors are travel (55%) and transportation (22%). Services sectors reforms are well advanced and generally in line with international best practices and principles of the Single Market. Jordan has made substantial commitments under GATS by binding 11 sectors. The EU’s policy towards the Mediterranean region as a whole is governed by the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership, launched at the 1995 Barcelona summit between the European Union and its 10 Mediterranean partners. Jordan is an active participant in furthering the trade objective of this process whose aim is to create a Euro-Mediterranean Free Trade Area by 2010 via a network of bilateral Association Agreements between the EU and individual Mediterranean partners, together with free trade agreements between the partners themselves. The Euro-Mediterranean Association Agreement with Jordan was signed on 24 November 1997 and entered into force on 1 May 2002 replacing the co-operation Agreement of 1977. Industrial products originating in Jordan are imported into the EU free of customs duties and charges. Reciprocally, Jordan abolished customs duties and charges on a large number of products originating in the Community and is liberalising the remaining products in several stages, according to their sensitivity for Jordanian markets.
On 25 February 2004 Jordan signed a free trade agreement with Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia. The Agadir Agreement, as it is known, commits the parties to removing substantially all tariffs on trade between them, and to intensifying economic cooperation notably in the field of harmonising their legislation with regard to standards and customs procedures. A similar agreement has been signed 2009 with Turkey. Jordan already signed a bilateral free trade agreement with the US in 2000 and a free trade agreement with Singapore in 2004. It is to be noted that Jordan became a member of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in April 2000.
Source: Austro-Arab Trade Directory 2011.
The mentioned data are subject to modification. No responsibility is taken for the correctness of the details provided.
Last modified: 24 January 2011