Jordan's King Wants Cabinet Reshuffle, New Plan for Social Welfare
Jordan’s King Abdullah on Thursday asked the government to chart an integrated socio-economic plan to improve the quality of life of citizens, while giving Prime Minister Ali Abul Ragheb a green light to reshuffle his cabinet in order to meet the new challenges, the Jordan Times reported.
“We expect the government to come up with a comprehensive national scheme coupled with a set mechanism and a detailed timetable,” the king told the premier in an 11-page letter.
According to the Amman-based paper, King Abdullah outlined a framework to serve as major guideline and a timetable for the projected “ambitious scheme,” designed mainly to curb unemployment and contain poverty.
For the king, combating those two primary problems has been his top priority since he ascended the throne in February 1999.
Citing official figures, one in three Jordanians lives under the poverty line, and unemployment rates are officially estimated at 13.3 percent of the country's one million-strong labor force.
The king asked Abul Ragheb to compile an initial working plan with a three-week span.
Investment priorities, he noted, should be directed towards “developing human resources, basic public services, upgrading governorates and expediting financial, administrative and judicial structural reforms.”
The king also called for attracting “private investment and setting up large national projects” as part of a long-term national strategy.
King Abdullah commended the premier, who formed his cabinet in June 2000, for a series of “daring measures and decisions” over the past year.
He cited Jordan's membership in pan-Arab free trade agreements and the World Trade Organization, as well as its partnership with the EU and the long-sought FTA with the US as examples of progress – Albawaba.com
© 2001 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)