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October 24 2021 6:22 AM ˚

The New Levant Initiative

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(Photo: Unsplash)
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The 2014 World Bank Group study called “Over the Horizon: A New Levant” was published to create opportunities in the region, suggesting a Jordanian role in energy, minerals, and services, along with proposing the reforms required to open economic borders and establish new strategies to resolve debt challenges facing the countries nominated in the study.اضافة اعلان

As Jordanians, we know this will bring the Kingdom huge benefits. The study also suggests that, in order to foster economic unity, the countries under the “new Levant” need to have harmonized policies. Within that context, the international community is looking towards Jordan to initiate and achieve stability in the region. The chances are good that we will make economic prosperity possible if our neighbors and partners facilitate the operations and we strengthen the internal front.

Can His Majesty King Abdullah accomplish the New Levant Initiative alone? This courageous move can only be met with what His Majesty always insisted on during his speeches to Jordanians: “Strengthening the internal front is our goal.”

We can’t meet big goals if we can’t deal with our diverse society. As Jordan is now home to many Arabs, refugees, and others, a new social contract needs to be agreed upon; a social contract that will address tribal societies, refugees, unformed political parties, fundamentalists, liberals, capitalists, and conservatives. This in turn needs a proper political reform and, as directed by the King to the Royal committee for political reform, we are heading towards a new election law. One that will allow all Jordanians to be represented through political parties and movements, which will result in a more diverse Parliament to reflect the actual views of the Jordanian people.

While this political reform is taking place and being studied and addressed carefully, the existing government has no choice but to open doors in the region to follow on with His Majesty’s initiative on the new Levant. This is our chance to expand all the elements of our economy towards the new Levant countries. Through innovation, exploration, and engaging directly through all its ministries, this government has a big role in this initiative. We hope that all sectors of the economy can be followed up on, to help facilitate the exchange of trade and experience.

Reaching the goals of this initiative will not be easy. Jordan has faced many challenges since 2014. Year after year, Jordan overcomes these challenges, including the Arab Spring, the deal of the century, the Trump administration, regional instability, Daesh, the sedition case, and finally, the Pandora leaks. This will not end here, but neither will the power of the Jordanian people.
This is a historical chance. An inclusive plan needs to be structured and proposed to harmonize the policies of all sectors, paving the way for the people of the region to feel the outcomes of this initiative and the unity to come. The best is still to come.

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