A
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Pastries, Chocolates
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B
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C
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D
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T
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French Version

Middle East Beat: Foreign Investment

Hardly a day passes without our media revealing a new foreign investment project in Jordan. At the same time also, considerable interest is being shown in the measures that might promote foreign investment, and allow it to make greater contribution to the development of our country as a recipient of this investment.

Of far greater influence than the measures adopted by the capital-exporting countries or foreign investors, are the policies adopted here in Jordan.

Our policies are now being adopted in the context of development planning, and the rationale as well as the effects of these policies, have taken on new dimensions.

No longer is the matter simply that of foreign investors dismissing investment prospects with the complaint that a “favorable climate” does not exist, and us having to contend that the inflow of foreign capital entails nothing but “foreign domination”. The central issue remains to devise on-going policies, that will succeed in both, encouraging a greater inflow of foreign investment, and ensuring that it makes the maximum contribution feasible, toward the achievement of our country's development objectives.

The tasks of development require both, more effective governmental activity, and more investment on the part of international finance institutions. Still, the foreign investor, must be aware of the developmental objectives and the priorities of our society, and understand how their investments fit into our development strategy. Undoubtedly, the contribution of foreign investment has to be interpreted in terms other than private profit. But at the same time, our government must recognize that, if risks are too high or the return on investment is too low, international investment will shy away from making any contribution at all.

Our development planning now requires the government to influence the performance of foreign investment, by appreciating fully the potential contribution of this investment, and to devise policies that will meet the mutual interests of the foreign investor and the Jordanian people. Obviously, this calls for more intensive analysis of the consequences of foreign investment, and for more thought and ingenuity, in devising new approaches that favor the mobilization of foreign investment, while ensuring its most effective planned performance, in terms of our country’s development program. Also indirectly, foreign investment can have a stimulating effect on Jordanian investments abroad, prompting possibly Jordanian investors to end their reluctance in investing in their own country. Both types of investments, national as well as foreign tend to feed on each other’s confidence in the hosting country of their investments.

If foreign investors feel that Jordan is the right place to hold their projects, then Jordanians ought to have the same confidence in the future of their own country, as well as of their own investments. Alternatively, it is very important also, to start thinking seriously in promoting joint ventures in the domain of private national capital as well as international one. This way, Jordanian business will be integrated in the international economy, and foreign business will be happy to know that its investment is safe.

Amman,06June2005
Khiri Janbek
The Star


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