Amman, February 3 – Cementing its role as one of Jordan’s main supporters, the European Union (EU) has signed at the end of 2020 five financing agreements with the Government of Jordan providing up to €159 million support in the form of grants, technical cooperation and support for project implementation.
This EU support covers the implementation of programmes in five different areas including boosting economic reforms, supporting the education sector, supporting public integrity and accountability, engaging with youth, and implementing the EU-Jordan partnership priorities.
H.E. Nasser Shraideh, Minister of Planning and International Cooperation, extended the Jordanian Government's appreciation to the EU for these grants, stressing that the relationship with the EU is historic and deep-rooted. “We are continuously seeking to consolidate these relations in areas of common interest, as the EU understands the challenges facing Jordan, including hosting Syrian refugees and the consequences of the ongoing Coronavirus epidemic.”
Minister Shraideh stressed the importance of these grants that will contribute to supporting economic reforms, the education strategy and increase job opportunities for young people to participate in the development of their communities, while improving the quality of technical and vocational training.
H.E. Maria Hadjitheodosiou, the EU Ambassador to Jordan, commended the resilient partnership between the EU and Jordan that continued to grow in 2020 despite the exceptional circumstances. “The EU remains committed to supporting Jordan, particularly through challenging times. We have signed five financial agreements indicating our commitment to support Jordan’s economic recovery efforts, to continue providing education under difficult circumstances and to encourage young people’s participation in Jordan’s development efforts, while also contributing to the effort to improve the capacity and efficiency of the public administration.”
A €64 million programme “EU Support to Economic Reforms for Growth and Jobs in Jordan” will support the implementation of the Government’s economic reform plans to improve private sector competitiveness and the investment climate, whilst strengthening public finance management. This programme will help Jordanian businesses reduce operating costs, create a more predictable investment environment, and support the rolling out of a transparent procurement system.
A second €65 million-programme, “Support to Quality of Education and Technical, Vocational Education and Training (TVET)”, will support the implementation of Jordan’s Education Strategic Plan. This programme aims to support quality and access to education, and improved governance and management, as well as continue to strengthen the database of the education system, provide technical assistance to the Ministry and enhance safe learning environments, targeting the most vulnerable populations.
The pursuance of the key results will enable the Government to ultimately achieve by 2022 a better educated, trained and qualified human capital which responds to labour market’s needs.
A third programme worth €10 million “Youth Inclusion in Jordan’s Development Process”, aims to improve young people’s participation in the labour market and their role in the development of their local communities. Of the total amount, €5 million will be provided in grants to a consortium of universities, youth associations, trade unions, and business development companies to provide mentoring and job placements in private companies. Additionally, €1.5 million will be allocated to youth initiatives in local communities, while the remainder will be technical assistance to the Ministries of Youth and Labour as well as a twinning programme.
Additionally, the EU will support “Improving Integrity and Accountability in Jordanian Public Administration” at central and local levels with €15 million. This programme will aim to build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels.
The EU and Jordan have agreed to allocate an additional €5 million to the ongoing programme “Supporting Implementation of Partnership Priorities,” with the financing of twinning projects between Jordan’s and EU Member States’ public administrations. Twinning projects help Jordanian institutions adopt effective regulations to perform their mandates effectively and efficiently. It builds the capacity of key Jordanian public administrations so they can successfully implement the partnership priorities between the EU and Jordan.