Jordan finance minister urges increase in PPPs
Abu-Hammour looks to potential of deals for key projects at RAK event
Jordan’s minister of finance has called upon regional government and investment companies to exploit the full potential of public-private partnerships for key projects.
Mohammed Abu-Hammour, speaking at the Global Arab Business Meeting 2010 in Ras Al Khaimah that brought together a number of senior decision makers including HH Sheikh Saud Bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Crown Prince and Deputy Ruler of the emirate, described the private sector as an "engine for growth" and noted that governments must act as "facilitator" to proactively encourage private sector participation in various development initiatives
Energy, water and sanitation, tourism and healthcare were four of the areas mentioned, along with initiatives into renewable energy and fossil fuels.
HH Sheikh Saud highlighted to delegates the importance of investment in education to sustain long-term economic growth.
"New scientific innovations – the internet, the bulk carriers, mobile phones and advanced logistic systems, have brought the world closer than ever before,” he said. “To be relevant in the increasingly interconnected and globalised world of today, the Arab World should invest more in education and research. There is a huge correlation between education and economic growth.”
In July, HH Sheikh Saud told Construction Week of his support for technology to continue the growth in sustainable building. The emirate has recently reiterated its plans to build a A Swiss-designed artificial island that will produce electricity and hydrogen using solar power.
The project is a collaboration between Neuchâtel's Swiss Center for Electronics and Microtechnology (CSEM) and the government.
“It’s something that’s part of the whole country,” he said. “God has blessed us with the sun and technology has seen dramatic improvement – and in Ras Al Khaimah we have sponsored a Solar Island project. Insulation I think is very important, and as we’ve seen improvements in technology we need to look at how to improve efficiencies."
Among the subjects to be discussed in the second day of the event is a discussion entitled ‘Real Estate and Infrastructure: The Road Ahead’.