(MENAFN - Jordan Times) Grants from the US and EU to support the state budget are set to exceed JD200 million this year, according to Minister of Planning and International Cooperation Jafar Hassan.
Hassan told reporters on Tuesday that the volume of grants to finance projects listed in the 2012 budget will be 30 per cent higher than the initial estimates of JD165 million.
Budgetary assistance from the US alone is expected to be around JD200 million, including the additional grant of 100 million (JD70 million), announced on July 22, and the regular annual aid of 184 million (around JD129 million), according to the minister.
Stopping short of mentioning the amount of financial aid expected from the EU, Hassan indicated that Jordan is set to receive the grant between October and December.
Speaking on the sidelines of a signing ceremony of the exchange of notes for a soft loan from Japan worth JD110 million, the official noted that the 5 billion Gulf fund to support Jordan's economy may finance some development projects before the end of this year.
Last year, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and Qatar decided to extend 5 billion over a five-year period to support development schemes in Jordan. Each state will pay 1.25 billion.
He elaborated that technical teams from Jordan and the Gulf nations are scheduled to convene after Eid Al Fitr holiday, which is expected to start either Saturday or Sunday till Wednesday, to discuss the projects that need to be funded this year.
The minister also indicated that Jordan and France are set to sign a soft loan agreement, under which Paris will provide Amman with 150 million euros to support the country's energy sector.
The loan was announced during the visit of His Majesty King Abdullah to Paris in early July.
According to planning ministry figures, Jordan is expected this year to receive economic assistance, including grants and soft loans, worth 2.5 billion.
Around 50 per cent of the assistance may be consumed by the budget to finance the deficit forecast to reach JD1.4 billion (2 billion), Hassan said in previous remarks.