KARAK, Jordan – Through its Economic Development Program, USAID Jordan has undertaken a local economic development strategy in the governorates that is empowering communities and creating thousands of jobs outside Amman. Since its inception, the program’s methodology for economic growth has been for all citizens to have full access to opportunities for new and better jobs and an enhanced quality of life. As part of this strategy, the program facilitated the creation of the Karak Economic Council, which is led by distinguished local public and private sector leaders.
Under the Patronage of His Excellency the Minister of Planning and International Cooperation, USAID Jordan launched today several projects in Karak Governorate. The celebration convened in the Karak Castle Plaza and was attended by His Excellency Mr. Ali Al-Shra’a, Governor of Karak; associates from the Minister of Planning and International Cooperation; Karak Economic Council members; USAID Jordan officials; and guests.
“Today, we are celebrating a number of projects that the council has designed and/or supported. Its leadership has been and will continue to be a monument to sustainable economic development, and we wish the council well,” said Dr. Ruba Jaradat, USAID Jordan representative.
Describing the Economic Council’s work, its President, Mr. Hussein Tarawneh, said in his welcoming remarks: “We are the link between different associations in Karak, civil society organizations, and the international organizations that provide technical support for economic development projects. Our involvement covers a wide scope of sectors such as agriculture, industry, business, and services. Funding projects is not the real challenge that we face. It is that of changing mindsets to embrace innovation, human, technical, management, and data base development.”
As part of the event, visitors toured representative projects funded by USAID Jordan in Karak, starting with the Jameed factories in Ader and Al Hrout, which impacted local communities by allowing 94 families to increase their income potential. Also highlighted was the web portal that was developed for Karak, as well as the new handicrafts center opened in Karak Castle Plaza. Additionally, the event included a graduation ceremony for participants who completed the “Future Managers” and “English Language” courses.
USAID also used the event to announce some of its future plans for the Governorate of Karak, which will be initiated through the Karak Economic Council. These plans include the launch of a new herbs project that will provide income and employment opportunities for economically-disadvantaged citizens, as well as a glass manufacturing facility and an auto body shop that will be opened soon. By creating sustainable economic growth, these projects will create new jobs and improve the overall standard of living for the people of Karak. USAID has also facilitated the transformation of the Karak Economic Council into an innovation cluster, which will focus its efforts on the creation of high-value jobs for the governorate’s citizens in sectors such as ICT-enabled services and clean technology.
“On behalf of USAID Jordan, I would like to thank Your Excellency for the personal support and guidance upon which we have always counted. Together, we can make a lasting difference in Jordan, thereby making it an economic model for the MENA region,” concluded Dr. Jaradat.
The USAID Jordan Economic Development Program is a five-year economic development initiative implemented by Deloitte Consulting LLP and a sizeable team of international and Jordanian partner firms. The program’s mission is to support sectors and activities in alignment with His Majesty King Abdullah’s vision for a knowledge-based economy, by inserting Jordanian enterprises into global value chains, promoting investment, and improving the enabling environment to generate value-added jobs, exports, foreign direct investment, and sector revenues as a powerful engine of economic growth.