Fakhoury discusses US, WB support to Jordan's economic growth

AMMAN — Planning and International Cooperation Minister Imad Fakhoury on Saturday discussed with US officials the assistance to Jordan for the year 2018 and the general budget in accordance with the memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed last February.
The assistance is expected to be endorsed by the US Congress in the next few weeks, a Planning Ministry statement said, following meetings with several US senior officials including Under Secretary of Treasury for International Affairs at the US Department of Treasury David Malpass and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Economic and Business Affairs at the US Department of States Manisha Singh, in addition to senior staffers of the US Senate's Appropriation Committee.
During the meetings, held on the sidelines of the World Bank's (WB) "Fragility Forum 2018: Managing Risks for Peace and Stability" between March 5 and 7, Fakhoury briefed the officials on the latest economic developments in Jordan, including the challenges generated by the regional turmoil and hosting large numbers of Syrian refugees, according to the statement.
He outlined the progress made in the field of development and of the reform agenda under the Executive Development Programme, as well as the Jordan Economic Growth Plan 2018-2022.
He also voiced appreciation for the US support including the 2018-2022 MoU, which stipulated $1.275 billion of aid each year at least.
Held every two years by the WB, the Fragility Forum brings together actors from the humanitarian, development, peace and security communities to share practical solutions and lessons learned in order to explore innovative ways to improve development approaches to foster peace and stability, the statement read.
A key panelist in the forum, Fakhoury shed light on the efforts Jordan has been exerting to deal with refugees and on the challenges it has been facing as a result, reiterating the importance of fair burden sharing. He urged for sustained and additional support to host communities to help them in maintaining basic service delivery in critical sectors such as water, municipal services, health, and education among others.
Jordan was invited to the forum as recognition of it being a "regional and global model" in dealing with refugee crises s through the development of the Jordan response plans and the Jordan Compact, according to the statement.
Fakhoury also met with WB President Jim Yong Kim, CEO Kristalina Georgieva, and Merza Hasan, executive director, in the presence of Jordan Ambassador to the US Dina Kawar.
The two sides discussed cooperation, including the bank's support to Jordan in 2018 and the preparations for a number of projects including a new highly concessional development policy loan and a number of technical support programmes expected to help Jordan deliver on its reform agenda as per the Jordan Economic Growth Plan 2018-2022.
The WB is one of Jordan’s important long-term development partners, as agreements signed in 2017 with the bank reached about $1.5 billion, providing essential support to the education, health, SMEs, youth, financial inclusion and municipal sectors in addition to budget support, the statement concluded.
Jordan Times
March 10, 2018