Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) development for inclusive growth: The IBRD project has had a strong impact on developing this sector in Jordan through promoting inclusive financial intermediation. This has increased the role of MSMEs in creating entrepreneurship and employment. The project has resulted in the creation of over 2,000 private sector jobs for the most disadvantaged segments of society and contributed to poverty reduction during a period of deteriorating macroeconomic conditions. About 62% of the project’s beneficiaries were located outside Amman, where unemployment and poverty rates are high. The project also succeeded in mainstreaming gender, with women-owned enterprises representing 85% of the beneficiaries. Youth, who suffer from the highest unemployment rates, represented more than 45%.
Second Education Reform for Knowledge Economy: IBRD funding has been used for the expansion and piloting of quality kindergartens and highly innovative, alternative childcare all over the country, with the gross enrolment rate increasing from 52.3% in 2009/10 to 58.9% in 2014. An Open Education Management Information System was set up with commitment by the Ministry of Education to continue publishing monitoring and evaluation reports on its website, promoting a culture of transparency in the sector, and the construction and rehabilitation of schools for students. Enrolment rates in primary and secondary education have increased from 96.9% to 98.1%, and 60.4% to 76.9%, respectively.
Syrian crisis response: Emergency Services and Social Resilience Program (ESSRP): Grant funding from this program is channeled to municipalities in Northern Jordan in the form of block grants to help municipalities respond to the increased demand for services due to the large influx of Syrian refugees. The nine municipalities participating in the program account for almost 50% (an estimated 300,000) of the total number of refugees living outside the camps. In the first year of implementation, the project has funded goods, works and services amounting to US$ 20 million. 60% of the resources are funding the procurement of equipment needed to address the extra demand on basic municipal services, including solid waste collection, management of waste water and access to water. Grants are also financing investments in priority infrastructure as identified by communities and municipalities covering improvements to the roads network, lighting in the streets, and also aim to address rising community tensions. Subject to the availability of additional financing, the project may expand in scope to include a larger number of municipalities that have been impacted by the Syrian crisis.
Justice Sector Reform: Improving community-driven legal aid for the poor (Japan Social Development Fund) and extending legal aid to displaced Iraqis and Palestinians (State and Peace-building Fund) to provide improved legal services to vulnerable persons, such as the poor, as well as Iraqi, Palestinian, and Syrian refugee communities. Counseling has been provided to more than 3,400 beneficiaries and legal representation to almost 1,500. Public awareness and information events have helped more than 6,800 vulnerable persons, roughly two-thirds of the beneficiaries were women.
International Finance Corporation (IFC): IFC has maintained a strong program in Jordan over the past several years, and has successfully mobilized other investors, particularly in cutting edge areas such as renewable energy. In FY14, IFC investments totaled around $420 million. Notable investments included a $221 million debt package to support the development of a wind farm in Jordan – the first privately-owned renewable energy facility, a repeat investment of around $94 million in Queen Alia Airport, $11 million in to Luminus, the leading private vocational and technical training provider in the country, and $2 million to FINCA Jordan, a leading Jordanian microfinance organization. FY15 pipeline includes several investments in renewables as part of the Jordan Renewable Program, and continued support of the financial sector including through IFC’s trade finance program. IFC has also continued to provide advisory services to strengthen financial infrastructure (credit bureau, secured lending), build the capacity of microfinance institutions, improve corporate governance, simplify business inspections, and advance energy efficiency.
Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA): MIGA’s outstanding gross exposure from investments into Jordan stood at US$212.9 million as of early September 2014. In FY13, MIGA issued a US$13 million political risk insurance guarantee to a U.S. investor for the expansion of the AS Samra Wastewater Treatment Expansion Project. MIGA’s other active project in Jordan involves the expansion and operation of existing bromine and bromine derivatives manufacturing plants. MIGA issued a US$199.8 million guarantee for that project covering an equity investment by Albemarle Corporation (United States) in Jordan Bromine Company Limited in FY12. MIGA’s support to foreign private investors sends a strong signal that Jordan remains a viable investment destination.
Last Updated: Sep 30, 2014