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Officials discuss steps to improve business climate

By JT - Nov 24,2015 - Last updated at Nov 24,2015

AMMAN — Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour on Monday said improving the business environment and the national economy's competitiveness is a top priority, highlighting the need to achieve tangible success in this regard.

Ensour made the remarks as he chaired a National Council for Competitiveness and Innovation meeting to discuss Jordan's score in the 2016 Ease of Doing Business report, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.

These international reports are very important for donors and have a direct impact on investment activity, the premier said.

Minister of Planning and International Cooperation Imad Fakhoury said the meeting focused on the first tranche of required reforms, be they related to registering property, starting an economic or investment activity, receiving credit or issuing building licences, according to Petra.

Fakhoury said that all stakeholders agreed on what has to be achieved in the last month of 2015 and the first quarter of 2016 in a way that guarantees the continuity of improving Jordan’s rank and facilitates procedures for investors.

Jordan was ranked 113th out of 189 countries in the World Bank’s 2016 Ease of Doing Business report.

Countries are ranked from 1 to 189 on their Ease of Doing Business, with rank 1 being the highest “ease”.

A high Ease of Doing Business ranking means the country’s regulatory environment is more conducive to starting and operating a local firm.

Rankings are determined by sorting the aggregate distance to frontier scores on 10 topics, each consisting of several indicators, and giving equal weight to each topic.

The council members also discussed reforms currently being implemented to improve the business environment by reducing the time needed to issue building licences and work permits from 14 days to seven, Petra reported.


In addition, they discussed facilitating tax paying procedures by implementing electronic systems for credit and payment, and reviewed procedures to reduce the forms required for registering companies, according to Petra.

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All the reforms discussed in this article will do nothing to improve the business environment in Jordan. As usual the Government touches on superficial solutions and never really gets into the depth of the problem. Hint: Improve the court system to protect the businesses, ease all registration fees and taxes, etc.

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