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Aqaba seeks to attract $10 billion worth of investments

By JT - Oct 21,2017 - Last updated at Oct 21,2017

AMMAN — Aqaba officials have said that they have a plan in place to attract $10 billion worth of investment to the zone by 2025, to be added to the JD20 billion lured since the inception of the special economic zone in 2011.

Chief Commissioner of the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority Nasser Shraideh added in remarks Saturday that the investments would create 30,000 jobs, as foreseen by a recently launched strategy, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported. 

He was speaking during the opening session of a conference titled “Aqaba, Gateway to the Levant and Beyond” in Aqaba, where he acted as patron.

Elaborating on the strategy, Shraideh said that Aqaba is expected to host five logistics hubs, rising from the current two, while the number of tourists is envisioned to increase from 600,000 this year to 1.5 million in 2025. The number of hotel rooms is also expected to increase from 4,650 to 12,000, while the city’s port is planned to have a capacity to handle two million containers, instead of 875,000 currently. 

This conference, which was organised in conjunction with the Marseille Week in Aqaba, aimed to “highlight the role of Aqaba as a major trans-shipment hub and a vital gateway to the region, especially after the opening of the Iraqi-Jordanian land border and plans to rebuild Iraq”, according to a statement by organisers.

The conference focussed on Aqaba Port’s growing importance, current logistics capabilities, growth potential of trade in the region as well as best practices and key challenges in the supply chain. 

 

Around 100 participants, including government officials from the region, business leaders from local, regional and European maritime shipping trade, logistics, insurance companies and the banking sector took part in the event.

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Comments

This will become more difficult since the S&P has downgraded Jordan and foresees another downgrade in the future (See JT article today). These types of investments only benefit a very limited region and very few in the country. That is way Jordan needs to encourage small and medium size businesses - the benefits of which will reach a much greater segment of the population.

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