King stresses need to focus on mega projects in economic vision

Amman 22 January 2024 (The Royal Hashemite Court Website) - His Majesty King Abdullah on Monday was briefed on progress in the implementation of the government’s executive programme for the Economic Modernisation Vision (EMV) for the year 2023.

During a meeting with officials at Al Husseiniya Palace, attended by His Royal Highness Crown Prince Al Hussein bin Abdullah II, King Abdullah stressed the need to maximise efforts and speed up implementation of programmes, while focusing on mega projects, and preparing the workforce to benefit from the opportunities offered by these projects.

His Majesty highlighted the need to enhance cooperation between ministries to speed up the implementation of the vision, and to avoid delays that may result from bureaucratic impediments.

The King called for enhancing communication between officials, Jordanians, and the private sector, and utilising media tools to highlight outcomes of priorities and projects and explain their impact on Jordanians’ lives, while guaranteeing the completion of each priority through the government’s follow-up unit.

Highlighting the importance of developing a follow-up system to analyse performance, address risks, and regulate accountability, His Majesty urged officials to work relentlessly, without hesitation.

At the meeting, attended by Prime Minister Bisher Khasawneh, the King said Jordan’s economic indicators were positive and within expectations before the war on Gaza last year, adding that work must continue to improve the economic outlook this year.

His Majesty listened to a briefing by Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs and Minister of State for Public Sector Modernisation Nasser Shraideh on major achievements across the economic vision’s eight engines.

On investment, the King said there is a possibility to achieve better outcomes than the current outlook with regards to attracting foreign investments to meet expectations.

On government performance follow-up, Minister Shraideh said a dashboard was launched last year that transparently explains progress in the EMV’s executive programme for 2023-2025, noting that data is regularly updated through quarterly progress reports available for the public to view.

His Majesty also followed up on progress in various sectors within the EMV’s executive programme, foremost of which is the Aqaba-Amman Water Desalination and Conveyance Project.

The project offers wide opportunities for local industries to benefit from its construction and operation requirements, as well as other requirements valued at billions of dollars, the King said, calling for equipping the labour force, especially youth, with the needed skills to work on the project once it is launched within the upcoming two years.

His Majesty reiterated the need to secure concessional financing for the project from international financing institutions, in light of the challenges Jordan is facing as a result of hosting refugees.

Water is a top national priority today, said the King, adding that any delays in the project are unacceptable, in order to guarantee its completion before the end of this decade.

At the same time, His Majesty directed the government to prepare suitable alternative plans to avoid any challenges that could affect water supply to Jordanians and various sectors.

The King also stressed the important role of the private sector in the project, as well as expanding it to benefit the national economy and develop local industries.

For his part, Water Minister Raed Abu Soud said the water conveyance project is a strategic project for Jordan, as part of the EMV, adding that the project seeks to secure 300 million cubic metres of desalinated water annually to meet drinking water needs in Jordan.