(MENAFN - Jordan Times) His Majesty King Abdullah on Monday called for adopting clear mechanisms and standards based on accountability and transparency in operating the Governorates Development Fund (GDF).
At a meeting with concerned officials to discuss the fund's objectives, King Abdullah underlined the importance of the GDF at the current stage, "in which we face tremendous economic challenges".
He noted that the fund is an "effective" tool that would stimulate economic activity in the governorates, create job opportunities for citizens and ensure them decent lives, a Royal Court statement said.
The fund, the King said, requires all to work together to render it a success and achieve tangible outcomes that would make a real difference to people's lives.
He added that the fund was established to support the establishment of job-creating projects in governorates to complement the government's development plans and programmes.
The Monarch ordered the creation of the JD150 million fund last year during a visit to Mafraq Governorate in order to finance development plans designed for the country's governorates.
The King stressed that all governorates should benefit equally from the GDF and that local communities take part in identifying priorities and investment opportunities in their respective areas in coordination with the concerned institutions and governors' offices.
He also pointed out the need to carry out awareness programmes to acquaint citizens with the objectives of the fund and ensure wider participation in production projects it is funding.
During the meeting, Prime Minister Fayez Tarawneh said the GDF, whose legal framework the Cabinet endorsed recently, seeks to develop governorates, maximise development benefits and improve cooperation between the public and private sectors, "not only for the sake of immediate profit, but also to realise comprehensive economic and social development".
Minister of Finance Suleiman Hafez said the ministry has designated enough financial allocations for the fund to ensure its capacity to finance production projects across Jordan, without giving further details, but the government last year allocated JD25 million immediately to fund the scheme.
Meanwhile, Yarub Qudah, CEO of the Jordan Enterprise Development Corporation (JEDCO), which supervises the fund, said JEDCO has examined the best international practices in the field and will adopt unconventional funding methods that are in line with the nature of each project, according to the statement.
In his Letter of Designation to Tarawneh, the King directed the government to take special care of the fund as a means to ensure equality among citizens.