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Syrian sector leaders to return Jordanian peers’ visit

Leading industrialist says visit to Damascus ‘very fruitful’

By Mohammad Ghazal - May 13,2018 - Last updated at May 13,2018

AMMAN — A trade and industrial delegation from Syria is scheduled to visit Amman following Eid Al Fitr, which is due mid-June, returning a recent visit by a Jordanian business delegation to Syrian capital.

“A Syrian delegation representing various sectors and companies will visit Jordan between Eid Al Fitr and Eid Al Adha after a large Jordanian delegation visited Damascus last week,” Mohammad Rifai, vice president of Jordan Chamber of Industry, told The Jordan Times on Sunday.

The Syrian delegation’s visit is meant to build on the outcome of last week’s visit and will be an opportunity to explore further areas of cooperation, said Rifai.

The Jordanian delegates included representatives from various sectors and trade and industry chambers.

“We had very positive and fruitful meetings with our Syrian counterparts…Trade ties between Syria and Jordan are very important for the two countries and in our meetings we stressed on the need to reopen the border crossings to facilitate trade,” Rifai said.

Discussions also covered Jordan’s role in efforts to rebuild Syria.

“The reopening of land borders is the key to resuming trade ties between Jordan and Syria… the current level of trade exchange between the two countries via Lebanon is very weak,” he said.

Rifai said the two sides stressed on the strategic cooperation between the private sectors in both countries, adding that the Syrian counterparts were “very welcoming” and supportive of Jordan to take a key role in the rebuilding process.

“We believe that our visit was important to send a good and a positive message to our Syrian peers and we are looking forward to their visit to Amman to further discuss means to resume relations,” said Rifai.

Thousands of tonnes of fruit and vegetables, worth millions of Jordanian dinars, used to be exported every day to Syria and Lebanon, official figures
show.

In 2015, Jordan closed the Jaber border crossing with Syria for security reasons, while Ramtha, the other border crossing with the war-torn country, has been closed for more than five years.

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