Jordanian and Syrian officials on Monday, February 12, discussed enhancing cooperation in the transport sector, officials said.
Transport Ministry under secretary Alaa Batayneh said the topic was the center of intensive talks between Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Transport Saleh Irsheidat and his Syrian counterpart Makram Obeid, after a three-day visit to Amman.
Batayneh said the Syrian official raised the prospects of enrolling more cadets at Queen Noor Aviation College. The Syrians, he added, were interested in gaining experience in airport traffic operations, airport engineering, basic aviation security, information technology, aerial navigation and flight safety courses.
Official sources said Syria and Jordan discussed plans for the reciprocal use of the two countries' ports: Aqaba on the Red Sea and Latakia on the Mediterranean. Obeid and Irsheidat also reviewed the working record of the Jordanian-Syrian Land Transport Company.
The company's director Muhannad Qudah told the Jordan Times that the company reached a turning point in October, turning a profit after 40 months of successive losses. With 400 lorries, the company recently shifted emphasis from internal cargo services to regional operations covering Syria, Lebanon and Jordan.
That strategic shift, Qudah said, helped the company reverse monthly losses of 100,000 Jordanian dinars ($140,000) down to JD 15,000 in early 2000. Since October last year, the venture has turned a profit of JD 7,000 monthly.
The company moves around 300 million tons of goods per year. Founded in 1976 in the heyday of Syrian-Jordanian relations, the Amman-based land transport company has a capital of JD7 million, shared equally by the two countries. Syria and Jordan also jointly operate a Latakia-based maritime company with a similar capital. — ( Jordan Times )
By Saad G. Hattar
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )