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Initiative planned to turn Jordan into ICT hub

Ministry to launch REACH 2025 at November’s MENA forum

By Mohammad Ghazal - Oct 20,2016 - Last updated at Oct 20,2016

AMMAN — REACH 2025 initiative, which serves as a roadmap to make Jordan a thriving regional ICT hub, has been drafted and will be launched during the upcoming MENA ICT Forum slated for next month, according to a top government official.

The strategy, which entails reinitiating the REACH initiative that Jordan first launched in 1999, details action plans, projects and measures required to turn the Kingdom into an ICT hub in the region, ICT Minister Majd Shweikeh told The Jordan Times on Thursday.

The initiative was drafted in collaboration with all stakeholders and is in line with His Majesty King Abdullah’s vision to boost the ICT sector, which contributes about 12 per cent to the country’s gross domestic product.

The public-private partnership in drafting the strategy is a point of strength, which will help boost the sector, said the minister.

The initiative focuses on the development of human resources to fulfil the needs of the local market and entails bridging the gap between higher education output and labour market demands, according to Shweikeh.

Enhancing entrepreneurship is also a key element of the strategy, which also requires developing infrastructure, said the minister, adding that the plan will focus on enhancing legislation governing the sector.

The initiative emphasises innovation in general and innovation in the public sector in particular, she added, stressing that it will help address challenges the sector is facing.

The ICT sector’s revenues dropped by 14 per cent in 2014 compared to 2013, down to JD546 million, according to the latest figures by the ICT Association of Jordan.

 

The decline was attributed to several local and external factors, including lack of incentives in previous years to boost the sector.

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