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UK Export Finance announces £66m inaugural deal in Jordan

Deal supports construction of facilities for Classic Fashion Apparel Industry in Aqaba, and is expected to create 4,000 jobs for Jordanians

By JT - Jun 29,2022 - Last updated at Jun 29,2022

UK Export Finance, the UK Government’s export credit agency, announced its first deal in Jordan to support Classic Fashion Apparel Industry in the construction of four new garment factories and a corporate office in Aqaba (Photo courtesy of the British embassy)

AMMAN — UK Export Finance (UKEF), the UK Government’s export credit agency, announced its first deal in Jordan to support Classic Fashion Apparel Industry in the construction of four new garment factories and a corporate office in Aqaba, according to a British embassy statement.

The deal, worth £66m, will facilitate the building of four factories including three satellite manufacturing units as well as the Aqaba main facility. This will enhance Jordan’s already strong textile industry, read the statement.

UKEF has provided support through a combination of direct lending and a buyer credit guarantee, allowing Classic Fashion Apparel Industry to move swiftly with their project and benefit from flexible repayment terms.

The new planned site located in Aqaba Special Economic Zone is expected to create around 4,000 jobs for Jordanians by 2024. 

Jobs for the local community are offered at varying levels, with the potential to grow and the opportunity to enter the business of garment manufacturing. 

The location is in close proximity to Aqaba port and gives Classic Fashion Apparel Industry an exporting advantage, the statement said.

This project will contribute to boosting manufacturing exports and jobs, in line with the targets for the sector contained in the recently launched Economic Modernisation Vision 2033, according to the statement.

The UK’s support will extend beyond the funding scheme, as more than 30 per cent of the services and supplies for the project — such as machinery and other building materials — will come from directly from UK providers. 

ASGC UK, a leading British construction company in the region, will project manage and oversee all related elements to ensure quality and timely delivery.

ASGC UK, Managing Director Paul Woodman said: “ASGC is delighted and honoured to be part of this landmark project in Jordan. We are privileged to count Classic Fashion as a client and hope this project will lead to further opportunities for ASGC in Jordan.”

Classic Fashion Apparel Industry Group is the largest apparel manufacturer in the MENA region. It produces around 550,000 garments per day and contributes to over 42 per cent of all garment exports from Jordan, according to the statement. 

The company produced 130 million garments in 2021 and expects production to grow to 165 million garments this year, the statement said. 

Classic Fashion Apparel Industry Chairman & Managing Director Sanal Kumar said: “Classic Fashion is committed to giving its best to the deserving people in the rural areas of Jordan. Also, I would like to emphasise that Classic Fashion will put all its might into being instrumental in achieving His Majesty’s vision 2033.” 

“I thank UKEF, British Embassy, and Department for International Trade in Amman & HSBC for coming along and supporting Classic Fashion in its journey of creating another 4000 jobs for Jordanians with the new set up in Aqaba of GIA Apparels- a fully owned entity of Classic Fashion”.

UKEF has made up to £3 billion available to help Jordanian buyers access the finance they need to trade with the UK. The full range of UKEF support is available to help finance priority projects in Jordan. 

British Ambassador to Jordan Bridget Brind said: “I am delighted to welcome this ground-breaking deal with Classic Fashion as the first to be backed by UK Export Finance in Jordan with the involvement of British company ASGC UK. It will help create new jobs and increase exports, contributing to Jordan’s economic growth and future prosperity. I hope it can act as a success story which can inspire more similar agreements in the future for the benefit of Jordan and the United Kingdom.” 

UK Minister of State for Asia and the Middle East, Amanda Milling MP, who is visiting Jordan as part of a regional visit, welcomed the initiative and the opening of a new apparel and textiles factory in Aqaba, which will create thousands of jobs in Jordan.

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