Jordan's King Abdullah has a 10-year plan for the country's economy
His Majesty King Abdullah on Tuesday stressed his full support to all the committees entrusted with preparing a future vision of the national economy, coupled with an executive plan, urging them to place the interests of Jordanians at the core of their work.
During a meeting with presidents of the sectoral committees charged with the task at Al Husseiniya Palace, the King described the future vision entailed in the 10-year economic plan as “the most important strategic initiative for the future of Jordan and Jordanians”.
During the meeting, attended by Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour, King Abdullah said the blueprint, which, he said, should broadly engage the private sector and civil society, along with the public sector, is prone to strengthen the economy and positively reflect on living standards of all Jordanians.
He reiterated that the problems facing the Kingdom are neither political nor security-related, but are of economic and developmental nature, stressing that improving the living conditions of citizens should be the motive behind any proposal the sectoral committees might put forward.
Expressing his confidence in the presidents of the 16 sectoral committees, the King urged full dedication to the mission at hand, adding that he expects them to work out solutions and a workable mechanism of implementation to the problems and challenges that are facing the economy, and work with full sincerity and transparency.
He stressed that all participants in drafting the plan should contribute their input to the process and seek to achieve the highest level of consensus on the proposals and how to implement them.
During the meeting, which was also attended by Royal Court Chief Fayez Tarawneh, the King’s Office Director Imad Fakhoury and Minister of Planning and International Cooperation Ibrahim Saif, the King listened to remarks made by the heads of the committees on their work at the current stage, the flow of work and challenges facing them.
The heads of committees noted that they have worked to examine the various aspects of economic and social activities in the Kingdom, applying “SWOT analysis”, which is a structured planning method used to evaluate the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.
They added that the committees will present their perspectives of the work required to strengthen financial and fiscal stability in the Kingdom, increase productivity, improve industry, boost national exports and enhance the financial and banking business environment, and reduce the trade balance and budget deficits as well as public debt.
They also stressed the importance of improving the investment environment to attract more energy investments into the Kingdom as well as the need to improve the education environment, including higher education as well as vocational and technical training.
In response to questions raised during the meeting, Ensour said there are two key tasks the government has worked on in the past two years. The first is the King’s directives to the government to draw up an overall four-year plan to be submitted to the Lower House. This has been accomplished, he said, noting, however, that unforeseen issues have emerged since then. “This means that there is a need for continued assessment and updating,” he added.
The second task is the annual plan, the premier said, which is to draft the central budget and that of independent government agencies. The 10-year plan, Ensour added, ensures that the King and citizens will have a glimpse into the future of the country a decade from now.
He said the plan will be constantly reviewed and updated year after year to remain a reference for officials during these 10 years.
Saif said he expects the first draft of the plan to be ready early next week, to be followed by a national meeting, slated for September 6th, to receive feedback from stakeholders.
The five core issues that the vision will focus on are: human resources development, social development, economic development, de-centralisation and governorate development.
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