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    Jordan, June 19, 2017
    EU assistance exceeded 1.3b euro since 2015 — report

    The EU’s assistance to Jordan has exceeded 1.3 billion euro over the past two years, according to a recent report.

    The assistance included grants worth 200 million euro under the European Neighbourhood Instrument, which aims to support the development of the private sector, waste water management, democratic governance and renewable energy, the report on the state of the EU-Jordan relations indicated.

    Released by the European External Action Service and European Commission on Thursday, the report added that a total of 392 million euro were leveraged in 2016 alone to fund investments in water and energy.

    In addition, 367 million euro in grants was channelled to enhance the “resilience of the country and mitigate the spillover effects of the Syrian crisis”, of which 166 million euro went to humanitarian assistance, while an additional 380 millions euro was extended in the form of loans.

    The report, which tracked relations between Jordan and the EU in the period between March 2015 and April 2017, noted that the EU stepped up its support to Jordan during the period studied, strengthening diplomatic ties as well as economic and trade cooperation.

    The report comes ahead of the 12th EU-Jordan Association Council, scheduled to take place on July 10th in Brussels.

    “Over the past two years, Jordan has played a unique role on the diplomatic and security front in the region, despite being severely impacted by the Syrian crisis and accommodating over 650,000 registered refugees,” the report said.

    It also cited “key reforms” implemented by the Kingdom, noting that bilateral cooperation had been directed towards “reinforcing the resilience of Jordan’s people and institutions to face the current economic, social, security and migration challenges, stimulate an inclusive and dynamic economy and society… “.

    Federica Mogherini, the EU high representative for foreign affairs security policy and vice president of the EU Commission, said that the EU and Jordan are “strong, like-minded partners”.

    “We have deep bilateral relations and share the same views on key regional issues, from the Middle East peace process to the situation in Iraq and the Syrian crisis…”

    “The EU will continue to stand by Jordan in implementing its ambitious reform agenda, as well as to strengthen our cooperation in countering terrorism and violent extremism, benefiting from Jordan’s active and leading role in the region,” Mogherini said, as quoted by the report.

    Johannes Hahn, EU commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, highlighted the EU decision to facilitate Jordan’s access to the EU market and its support to the country’s efforts to address macroeconomic imbalances.

    The EU has allocated more than 950 million euro in assistance to refugees and vulnerable communities in Jordan since 2011.

    In addition, the EU has made available an average of 100 million euro each year in grant assistance to Jordan, bringing the overall amount earmarked for the Kingdom to over 1.55 billion euro since 2011, the report showed.

    jordantimes