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ASEZA chief Mahadin heads new PPP for investment in Aqaba

Committee includes Asfour, economic affairs chief at Royal Court

04 February, 16:38
ASEZA chief Mahadin heads new PPP for investment in Aqaba (ANSA) - Aqaba, February 4 - Kamel Mahadin, the chief commissioner of the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority (ASEZA), is the head of a new private-public-partnership (PPP) committee tasked with enhancing the Red Sea city's investment climate.

The new committee includes Samer Asfour, the director of the economic affairs department at the Royal Court of Jordan, members of public and private sector bodies and local community representatives.

The chairman said on Sunday that the committee was the fruit of momentum empowered by King Abdullah's directives, stressing the importance of team work and coordination among all parties in Aqaba to implement strategic projects, attract investment and create jobs to improve the living standards for the citizens there.

Noting that the committee has started to work on the means to implement the monarch's vision following his recent visit to the port, Mahadin said the main task was evaluating the current situation in Aqaba to come up with a clear vision for the future of the city, paving the way to transform it into a world class business hub, leisure destination and economic development zone.

According to the ASEZA chief, during a recent meeting members of the committee discussed the current investment atmosphere in Aqaba, focusing on the compatibility of its investment regulations with the king's vision.

The committee stressed the need for a thorough review of the draft investment law to ensure that it achieves its objectives, said Mahadin, who served as water and irrigation minister several years ago.

He added that, within its mandate and goals to eliminate impediments, the committee reviewed the investment map and determined the saturation level in each sector, to further offer competitive and feasible investment opportunities, in accordance with ASEZA's master plan.

The members also underlined the importance of PPPs to generate comprehensive long-term gains to benefit the lives of all segments in Jordanian society, he noted.

Committee members emphasized the need to encourage the private sector to implement corporate social responsibility programmes to ensure the sustainability of the development process, as well as the engagement of all social segments.

According to Mahadin, the committee also called for a revision of ASEZ's master plan and strategies with more focus on the opportunities and incentives in Aqaba, as the city is witnessing development of a comprehensive port community plan, which includes creating and enhancing port facilities, particularly ports designated to handle energy products.

The committee includes representatives from ASEZA, the Aqaba Development Corporation, and major developers in Aqaba from the tourism, real-estate, transport and logistics and industrial sectors.