Abu Dhabi – MENA Herald: Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD) and the Government of Jordan enjoy strong historic ties that date back to more than four decades. Both countries have worked together towards achieving their sustainable development goals, supporting projects in fundamental sectors that benefit local communities.
Since commencing operation in Jordan in 1974, ADFD has funded 11 development projects worth AED507 million and managed 17 government grants to the tune of AED4.610 billion. This takes the total number of projects supported and managed by the Fund in the kingdom to 28 projects with a total project outlay of AED5.117 billion. These projects cover multiple sectors including mining, water and irrigation, energy, healthcare, transportation, housing, education and agriculture.
In addition to the concessional loans extended by ADFD to Jordan during the past decades, the UAE Government has provided the Kingdom with grants to fund projects that support economic and social development and ensure improved livelihoods for its citizens.
In 2013, the UAE allocated AED4.6 billion (US$1.25 billion) to Jordan as part of a US$5 billion grant that was approved during a GCC summit. Managed by ADFD, this grant is allocated towards funding vital projects that help accelerate economic development in Jordan.
Commenting on the distinguished relations between ADFD and the Government of Jordan, His Excellency Eng. Imad Fakhoury, Minister of Planning and International Cooperation in Jordan, said: “Jordan and the UAE maintain deep-rooted ties that have grown from strength to strength over years due to the continued engagement between His Majesty King Abdullah II Ibn Al Hussein, His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces. This engagement has had a positive impact on both countries and has been translated into many successful development projects.”
Lauding the UAE’s crucial role in promoting economic development in Jordan, Fakhoury wished the UAE further progress and prosperity under the wise leadership of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan. He also thanked ADFD for its continued support of Jordan’s development since 1974, and for standing by the country to address its various economic and social challenges through financing development projects aligned with the Jordanian government’s development priorities.
ADFD’s funded development projects in Jordan have contributed to enhancing the social and economic standards of Jordanians and boosting the government’s development goals and plans. The sectors supported by the Fund in the Kingdom includes:
Energy: Meeting Jordan’s surging energy demand represents a major challenge for the Jordanian government in its efforts to reduce the energy bill that puts pressure on the government expenditure. To help the Jordanian Government tackle this issue, ADFD has supported a number of projects in energy sector, such as:
LPG Terminal in Aqaba City: A dedicated terminal for handling LPG is being constructed in Aqaba in line with the best practices and global safety standards. The project aims to help the Kingdom meet its LPG demand and increase its LPG handling capacities.
Construction of Storage Facilities for Petroleum Derivatives: The project aims to increase Jordan’s storage capacities for petroleum derivatives by 60%, helping the country achieve oil security and create 200 new job opportunities.
Installation of Solar Panels in Al Quweira Region: The project aims to generate 75 megawatts of electricity from renewable sources and create 200 new job opportunities for people living in the Al Quweira region. Additionally, it seeks to reduce the cost of Jordan’s fuel imports and encourage the private sector to invest in renewable energy sector.
Water and Irrigation: ADFD contributed to the development of many projects that serve the water and irrigation sectors in Jordan. The Fund financed the development a number of dams and irrigation projects that helped in replenishing ground water to Jordan’s rapidly depleting aquifers and providing clean drinking water for its citizens. These projects have also had a direct impact on other vital economic sectors such as industry, agriculture and services. Some of the important projects supported by ADFD include:
Construction of King Talal Dam
Construction of Al Wahda Dam
Construction of Zarqa-Ma’een Dam
Construction of Kufranja Dam
Renovation of Hasban – El Kefrain irrigation project
Renovation of Southern Ghurs irrigation project
Transportation Sector: ADFD financed the construction of a network of roads including international thoroughfares, ring roads in different provinces and a large network of rural and agricultural roads, strengthening Jordan’s civil infrastructure and facilitating easy movement of people and goods between Jordan and the rest of the region and the world. These projects allowed Jordan to create a favorable climate for investment and reduce the number of road accidents, while also enhancing the competitiveness of the national economy. Some of the important projects supported by ADFD include:
Road connecting Al Azraq with Syrian border
Amman development corridor project
Construction, expansion and improvement of roads
Housing Sector: ADFD financed the development of Al Karamah residential district in Aqaba City. The project involved the construction of new housing units for residents of the southern Shallalah area who lacked basic services. The development project aimed to boost tourism in southern Shallalah, and provide all modern services to its citizens to empower them socially and economically.
Healthcare sector: ADFD contributed to the financing of a number of projects in the healthcare sector that helped the country extend the reach of healthcare services to larger segments of society, and efficiently manage the significant pressure on healthcare services due to the continued influx of refugees. The ADFD-financed projects also helped Jordan enhance its status as medical tourism hub by supporting the development of specialty hospitals and fitting out the existing facilities with the latest medical equipment. The Fund also provided assistance for the expansion of King Hussein Cancer Center. Some of the projects funded by ADFD in the healthcare sector include:
Construction of a specialised children’s hospital at King Hussein Medical City
Provision of medical equipment to support the expansion of Al Bashir Hospital
Construction of an oncology treatment center
Expansion of King Hussein Cancer Center
Education and Higher Education Sector: ADFD funding for Jordan’s education sector aimed to replace unsafe and overcrowded school buildings and phase out double shift and rented schools. The fund also supported the establishment of computer and science laboratories at schools to improve the quality of education and meet the unexpected increase in the number of students due to the enrollment of nearly 150,000 Syrian student.
In the higher education sector, ADFD aimed to enable public universities and community colleges to enhance the quality of education through setting up laboratories and supporting facilities. ADFD supported the following projects:
Construction of (31) schools in various regions of Jordan
Development of public universities
Development of technical education at community colleges
For his part His Excellency Mohammed Saif Al Suwaidi, Director General of Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD) congratulated the leadership, government and people of the Kingdom of Jordan on the occasion of its Independence Day which falls on May 25. He also emphasized the strength and importance of historical relations between the UAE and Jordan, which flourished thanks to the wisdom of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and His Majesty King Abdullah II, King of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.
Al Suwaidi concluded that ADFD has actively assisted Jordan in its development process since 1974 through the financing of major development projects that have had a positive impact on the lives of thousands of Jordanians. These projects have helped the Jordanian government in achieving its development goals and providing improved standard of living for its citizens.