Private Sector Development, Privatization, and Industrial Policy

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Creating Markets in Jordan: Volume II, Sector Assessments - Country Private Sector Diagnostic

2021-11, International Finance Corporation

The Jordan Country Private Sector Diagnostic (CPSD) is a joint International Finance Corporation (IFC)-World Bank report that highlights the constraints as well as the opportunities facing the private sector in Jordan. It considers three sectors—tourism, logistics, and information and communication technology (ICT) - and the potential they offer for greater private sector contributions to the Jordanian economy, as well as the obstacles that they face from general or sector-specific policies and regulations. The CPSD also offers concrete recommendations to address some of these constraints. Although this report was largely prepared prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, its analysis and recommendations remain as, if not more, valid in the context of the pandemic and of an eventual recovery. A dynamic and resilient private sector is necessary if Jordan is to break the low-growth, high-unemployment trajectory it finds itself in today. The CPSD argues that tackling some of the major obstacles facing the private sector is essential to firm performance, investment, and productivity. These actions are as critical in times of crisis and especially afterwards to pave the way for a vigorous and sustainable recovery. Similarly, the sectors assessed by the CPSD continue to hold promise for the country. The pandemic has underscored the important role that digitalization, a strong ICT infrastructure, and supportive services have in creating a resilient economy and business continuity. E-commerce and logistics capabilities and services are an area put forward by the CPSD as an opportunity for Jordan in the coming years; they have boomed during the current crisis and are expected to be one of the post-pandemic growth sectors. Conversely, tourism, which had been experiencing a strong rebound in Jordan over the past few years, is one of the sectors hardest hit across the globe by the COVID-19 crisis. In Jordan the sector accounts for about 19.2 percent of gross domestic product and 32 percent of exports. Crafting a strategy that effectively addresses the many obstacles that prevent the tourism sector from attaining its potential is a necessary investment for a strong recovery - and a good use of what is likely to be a transitional period until travel re-commences.