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Visitors in
The Ruhr: built on energy

RecShow '08

Middle East Recycling, Waste & Environmental
Management Exhibition & Congress

Successfully Concluded on Feb. 19th , 2008

Environmental Reform in Jordan: a Trigger for Sustainable Change

Ms. Ruba A. Al-Zu'bi
Director of Policy and Development,
Ministry of Environment of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.
rubaalzoubi[at], rubaalzoubi[at]

Home-made Reform Agenda

Jordan is a semi arid country that lies between three continents namely Europe, Asia, and Africa which gave the country diversity in habitats with an enormous biodiversity. Jordan is facing a number of challenges including those associated with water and wastewater, energy, land degradation, unplanned urbanization, waste management …etc. In addition to a dedicated chapter for environment in the National Agenda – our national strategic roadmap whose ultimate purpose is to achieve sustainable development through a transformation program that puts Jordan on a trajectory path toward fast economic growth and greater social inclusion, several legislative acts have been adopted to address environmental challenges; namely, the new Environment Protection Law (No. 52 for 2006) and the amended Agricultural Law (No. 44 for 2002).

In his opening remarks at the World Economic Forum (May 2007), His Majesty King Abdullah II highlighted three key challenges that our Region needs to tackle among which are environment and sustainability of natural resources. A couple of days before that and in the Petra III Noble Laureates Meeting, His Majesty stressed the need to prepare initiatives in areas of core concern – education, economic progress, health, the environment; and to think out of the box to ignite tremendous innovation.
In Jordan, the leadership and the Government believe it is about time to become proactive rather than reactive and support innovative ideas and technologies to ensure a sustainable pattern of development. It is about time for people and civil society organizations to have a say and action in protecting their surrounding environments. It is undoubtedly the time to reform the whole environment management system.

Jordan has embarked on a multifaceted agenda of social, economic, and political reforms, with the aim of building a modern state based on economic vitality with substantial potential for growth and prosperity, political inclusion, and social stability. Jordan’s reform agenda includes legislative, administrative, and judicial reforms to enhance the efficiency of the public sector, enhance investment environment, and ensure the strict and transparent implementation of the rule of law. Legislative reforms included amending and enacting numerous laws and regulations, as well as streamlining of investment related laws. As for monetary and fiscal reforms, efforts have been undertaken by the Government of Jordan in order to strengthen fiscal discipline, reform tax system, maintain stable exchange rate, and sustain high levels of foreign currency reserves. In the area of good governance, political and social inclusion, Jordan is moving ahead with a wide range of reforms aimed at increased transparency, broadening public participation in the decision making process, promoting judicial independence, promoting greater accountability of the government, and combating corruption.

As part of its overall environmental reform process, the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan is developing and reforming the legal and institutional frameworks for environmental management and compliance. This is of particular significance to Jordan as a signatory to most of the Multilateral Environmental Agreements and to a considerable number of free trade and association agreements including those with the United States and the European Union. In a marked step towards enhancing environmental enforcement, Jordan launched its Environmental Rangers Directorate in June 2006 aiming at gathering all enforcement-related efforts under one qualified agency. In addition, the establishment of Jordan Environment Fund is underway. The fund shall contribute to harnessing the impact of technological innovation and capital investment to promote energy and water resources utilization and means of production that are cleaner, more efficient, cheaper, and more sustainable, and will be open on a competitive basis and within pre-specified criteria to a variety of interested sectors. In addition, the Ministry is developing policies and mechanisms to enhance public participation in environmental decision-making as well as private sector involvement in environmental management. The 'young' Ministry of Environment – established in 2003 – is leading the process in cooperation with various concerned stakeholders and with the support of several international donors. Undoubtedly, strong – yet upgradeable - institutional and regulatory frameworks are a key enabling base for sustainable environmental management systems including waste. This brief paper summarizes the Jordanian Ministry of Environment's institutional and legal strengthening efforts that made us a successful model across the region, as well as some of the strategic directions necessary to sustain and improve the process.

Highlights on Reform Aspects:

1. Legal Upgrading:

2. Policy and Planning:

3. Institutional Capacity Development and Decentralization:

4. Permitting and Guidance:

5. Inspection and Enforcement:

6. Economic and Soft Instruments:

7. Role of Non-governmental Organizations:

8. Role of Private Sector:

9. Research and Innovation:


Organized by: Walid Hikmat

RAK, United Arab Emirates

Tel: +971 50 374 0617

E-Mail   :  


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