(MENAFN - Jordan Times) Planning and International Cooperation Minister Jafar Hassan on Wednesday called on the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) Group to play a greater role in marketing and funding strategic projects with regional dimension.
Speaking at the IDB's 37th meeting in Khartoum, the minister gave as example electricity and railway connection schemes, stressing the need to revisit the bank's financing conditions to reduce the cost of funding by making use of the credit ranking the group enjoys.
According to a press release from the Ministry of Planning, the minister also called for extending the bank's role in supporting new programmes targeting local communities in order to eradicate poverty and direct the resources towards achieving socio-economic balance.
Hassan, heading the Jordanian delegation, said the "extraordinary" events taking place in the Arab region has caused an economic and investment slowdown in the Kingdom.
"The challenges imposed on the Kingdom require more efforts to contain the negative impact of the political unrest witnessed in some Arab countries in order to enhance the economic and political reform process," the press statement quoted him as saying.
Regarding priorities determined by the government for the upcoming stage, Hassan said Jordan will focus on supporting small- and medium-sized businesses, which he noted would create the majority of work opportunities provided in the country.
He added that the government is working to establish an investment fund in governorates in cooperation with the private sector, a step the minister said would support innovative investment ideas in all regions.
Hassan indicated in the press release that the government is also working to improve the production of competitive sectors and foster the public-private partnership, in addition to implementing strategic and regional schemes with the private sector, citing mega-projects Jordan is planning to carry out in vital sectors such as water, energy and transport.
Between 1975 and 2011, IDB extended 801.5 million to the Kingdom through grants and soft loans that supported the establishment of projects in the fields of water, education, housing, infrastructure, energy, health and agriculture, according to the statement.