(MENAFN - Jordan Times) The government said on Wednesday that it will establish a consultative council to increase Arabic content on the Internet.
The council will include representatives of the public sector, private content development companies, academia, publishers, lenders and investment funds, a source at the Ministry of Information and Communications Technology said.
"Our objective is to help look into ways to increase Arabic content to serve Internet users not only in Jordan but across the Arab world," the source told The Jordan Times.
The council will be created as part of the government's policy for the ICT sector in Jordan, which is currently being developed.
Currently, only 2 per cent of all web content is in Arabic, although Arabic speakers account for 5 per cent of global Internet users, according to Google.
In the Middle East, there are an estimated 78.62 million Internet users, a number that grew by 2.293 per cent between 2000 and 2011, according to www.internetworldstats.com.
About 65 per cent of Arab Internet users look for Arabic content.
In Jordan, where Internet penetration reached 55.9 per cent by the end of June 2012, several organisations recently started initiatives to boost Arabic content on the web.
TAGpedia, an online encyclopaedia conceived with the aim of increasing the amount of Arabic content on the web, is scheduled to launch in December with about 500,000 articles in Arabic.
The Talal Abu-Ghazaleh Organisation, which is producing the encyclopaedia, has already compiled 400,000 items from across the Arab world on a variety of sciences and other topics.
The Amman-based Jordan Open Source Association also announced recently that it was working on a project with the Wikimedia Foundation to increase Arabic content about Jordan on the web.