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    24-Oct-2019

King urges clear measures to stimulate economy, meet citizens' needs

 

The Jordan Times

 

AMMAN — His Majesty King Abdullah on Wednesday said that the time has come to take clear decisions and measures that stimulate the economy, meet citizens’ needs and reduce unemployment.
 
Chairing part of a Cabinet meeting during a visit to the Prime Ministry, King Abdullah stressed that the package of government measures and decisions should be clear for citizens to understand and discuss, according to a Royal Court statement.
 
His Majesty said that having a clear plan to move forward steadily will attract more regional and international investments to Jordan, providing job opportunities for Jordanians, according to the statement.
 
 For his part, Prime Minister Omar Razzaz emphasised the government’s full commitment to implement and follow up on the King’s directives, especially on matters related to stimulating the economy and promoting investment.
 
Razzaz stressed that the Royal directives constitute a roadmap for government action, noting that the government has taken measures and made decisions it will start to announce on Sunday in implementation of His Majesty’s directives, especially those expressed to the Cabinet two months ago.
 
The prime minister added that the measures and decisions fall within four main areas: Increasing wages, stimulating the economy and investments, improving quality of services and administrative reform and public finance.
 
On increasing wages, Razzaz said that the government would review civil service allowances and other relevant legislation to ensure wage increases as of the beginning of next year using clear criteria that link promotions and incentives to performance.
 
Turning to the area of stimulating the economy and promoting investments, he said the government on Sunday will launch a package of incentives for the private sector to encourage the employment of young Jordanians to replace foreign labour.
 
The prime minister noted that the package will also sustain the incentives awarded to investors and settle any outstanding concerns, as well as provide legal protection in cases of insolvency and the confiscation of assets over financial liability.
 
The package will also target the real estate and housing market, facilitating access to adequate housing.
 
On the quality of public services, Razzaz underscored the government’s efforts in the education sector.
 
He noted that the government is working to make early education (kindergarten) compulsory starting within the upcoming academic year 2020/2021, while continuing to implement the National Strategy for Human Resources Development, which includes updating the educational process and enhancing classroom environment and school transportation.
 
In the transport sector, the prime minister stressed the government’s commitment to the completion of the project to revamp the desert highway in mid-2020 and the completion of the Bus Rapid Transit project, which will be operational by the end of 2021.
 
Moreover, he said that the government will continue to expand the base of those covered by healthcare insurance until it encompasses the entire population by 2023.
 
Regarding administrative reform and public finance, Razzaz underscored the government’s commitment to easing bureaucratic procedures and increasing efficiency by merging independent government commissions and institutions and restructuring government units to include them under ministries, based on an extensive study.
 
The government will also work to raise the efficiency of revenue collection and control its expenditure in next year’s budget, in line with the current economic climate, he added.
 
The premier said the government will announce a timeline for implementing these measures, with clear key performance indicators to enable all to follow up on and monitor execution.
 
Royal Hashemite Court Chief Yousef Issawi, Adviser to His Majesty for Communication and Coordination Bisher Khasawneh, and Adviser to His Majesty for Policies and Media Kemal Al Nasser attended the Cabinet meeting.
 
 

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