Jordan 1999Jordan

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Jordan - Introduction 1999
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Background: For most of its history since independence from British administration in 1946 Jordan was ruled by King HUSSEIN (1953-1999). A pragmatic ruler he successfully navigated competing pressures from the major powers (US USSR and UK) various Arab states Israel and a large internal Palestinian population through several wars and coup attempts. In 1989 he resumed parliamentary elections and gradually permitted political liberalization; in 1994 a formal peace treaty was signed with Israel.

Jordan - Geography 1999
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Location: Middle East, northwest of Saudi Arabia

Geographic coordinates: 31 00 N, 36 00 E

Map referenceMiddle East

Total: 89,213 km²
Land: 88,884 km²
Water: 329 km²
Comparative: slightly smaller than Indiana

Land boundaries
Total: 1,619 km
Border countries: (5) Iraq 181 km; , Israel 238 km; , Saudi Arabia 728 km; , Syria 375 km; , West Bank 97 km

Coastline: 26 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea:3 nm

Climate: mostly arid desert; rainy season in west (November to April)

Terrain: mostly desert plateau in east, highland area in west; Great Rift Valley separates East and West Banks of the Jordan River

Extremes lowest point: Dead Sea -408 m
Extremes highest point: Jabal Ram 1,754 m

Natural resources: phosphates, potash, shale oil
Land use

Land use
Arable land: 4%
Permanent crops: 1%
Permanent pastures: 9%
Forests and woodland: 1%
Other: 85% (1993 est.)

Irrigated land: 630 km² (1993 est.)

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards: NA


Jordan - People 1999
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Population: 4,561,147 (July 1999 est.)
Growth rate: 3.05% (1999 est.)
Below poverty line: 30% (1998 est.)

Noun: Jordanian(s)
Adjective: Jordanian

Ethnic groups: Arab 98%, Circassian 1%, Armenian 1%

Languages: Arabic (official), English widely understood among upper and middle classes

Religions: Sunni Muslim 96%, Christian 4% (1997 est.)

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure
0-14 years: 43% (male 1,005,211; female 954,968)
15-64 years: 54% (male 1,265,116; female 1,200,372)
65 years and over: 3% (male 67,852; female 67,628) (1999 est.)

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate: 3.05% (1999 est.)

Birth rate: 34.31 births/1000 population (1999 est.)

Death rate: 3.85 deaths/1000 population (1999 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1000 population (1999 est.)

Population distribution


Major urban areas

Current issues: limited natural fresh water resources; deforestation; overgrazing; soil erosion; desertification
International agreements party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands
International agreements signed but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Air pollutants

Sex ratio
At birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
Under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 1 male(s)/female
Total population: 1.05 male(s)/female (1999 est.)

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate: 32.7 deaths/1000 live births (1999 est.)

Life expectancy at birth
Total population: 73.06 years
Male: 71.15 years
Female: 75.08 years (1999 est.)

Total fertility rate: 4.64 children born/woman (1999 est.)

Contraceptive prevalence rate

Drinking water source

Current health expenditure

Physicians density

Hospital bed density

Sanitation facility access


Major infectious diseases

Obesity adult prevalence rate

Alcohol consumption

Tobacco use

Children under the age of 5 years underweight

Education expenditures

Definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Total population: 86.6%
Male: 93.4%
Female: 79.4% (1995 est.)

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment

Jordan - Government 1999
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Country name
Conventional long form: Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan
Conventional short form: Jordan
Local long form: Al Mamlakah al Urduniyah al Hashimiyah
Local short form: Al Urdun
Former: Transjordan

Government type: constitutional monarchy

Capital: Amman

Administrative divisions: 12 governorates (muhafazat, singular_muhafazah; Ajlun, Al 'Aqabah, Al Balqa', Al Karak, Al Mafraq, 'Amman, At Tafilah, Az Zarqa', Irbid, Jarash, Ma'an, Madaba

Dependent areas

Independence: 25 May 1946 (from League of Nations mandate under British administration)

National holiday: Independence Day, 25 May (1946)

Constitution: 8 January 1952

Legal system: based on Islamic law and French codes; judicial review of legislative acts in a specially provided High Tribunal; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

International law organization participation


Suffrage: 20 years of age; universal

Executive branch
Chief of state: King ABDULLAH II (since 7 February 1999)
Head of government: Prime Minister Fayez TARAWNEH (since 20 August 1998)
Cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the prime minister in consultation with the monarch
Elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; prime minister appointed by the monarch

Legislative branch: bicameral National Assembly or Majlis al-'Umma consists of the Senate (a 40-member body appointed by the monarch from designated categories of public figures; members serve four-year terms) and the House of Representatives (80 seats; members elected by popular vote on the basis of proportional representation to serve four-year terms)
Elections: House of Representatives_last held 4 November 1997 (next to be held NA November 2001)
Election results: House of Representatives_percent of vote by party_NA; seats by party_National Constitutional Party 2, Arab Land Party 1, independents 75, other 2
Note: the House of Representatives has been convened and dissolved by the monarch several times since 1974; in November 1989 the first parliamentary elections in 22 years were held

Judicial branch: Court of Cassation

Political parties and leaders

International organization participation: ABEDA, ACC, AFESD, AL, AMF, CAEU, CCC, ESCWA, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), ISO (correspondent), ITU, MONUA, NAM, OIC, OPCW, PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNMIBH, UNMOP, UNMOT, UNOMIG, UNPREDEP, UNRWA, UPU, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO (applicant)

Diplomatic representation
In the us chief of mission: Ambassador Marwan Jamil MUASHIR
In the us chancery: 3,504 International Drive NW, Washington, DC 20,008
In the us telephone: [1] (202) 966-2,664
In the us FAX: [1] (202) 966-3,110
From the us chief of mission: Ambassador William BURNS
From the us embassy: Jabel Amman, Amman
From the us mailing address: P. O. Box 354, Amman 11,118 Jordan; APO AE 9,892-0200
From the us telephone: [962] (6) 5,920,101
From the us FAX: [962] (6) 5,927,712

Flag descriptionflag of Jordan: three equal horizontal bands of black (top), white, and green with a red isosceles triangle based on the hoist side bearing a small white seven-pointed star; the seven points on the star represent the seven fundamental laws of the Koran

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage

Jordan - Economy 1999
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Economy overview: Jordan is a small Arab country with inadequate supplies of water and other natural resources such as oil and coal. Jordan benefited from increased Arab aid during the oil boom of the late 1970s and early 1980s, when its annual real GNP growth averaged more than 10%. In the remainder of the 1980s, however, reductions in both Arab aid and worker remittances slowed real economic growth to an average of roughly 2% per year. Imports_mainly oil, capital goods, consumer durables, and food_outstripped exports, with the difference covered by aid, remittances, and borrowing. In mid-1989, the Jordanian Government began debt-rescheduling negotiations and agreed to implement an IMF-supported program designed to gradually reduce the budget deficit and implement badly needed structural reforms. The Persian Gulf crisis that began in August 1990, however, aggravated Jordan's already serious economic problems, forcing the government to shelve the IMF program, stop most debt payments, and suspend rescheduling negotiations. Aid from Gulf Arab states, worker remittances, and trade contracted; and refugees flooded the country, producing serious balance-of-payments problems, stunting GDP growth, and straining government resources. The economy rebounded in 1992, largely due to the influx of capital repatriated by workers returning from the Gulf, but recovery was uneven. A preliminary agreement with the IMF in early 1999 will provide new loans over the next three years. Sluggish growth, along with debt, poverty, and unemployment are fundamental ongoing economic problems.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate: 2.2% (1998 est.)

Real gdp per capita ppp

Gross national saving
Gdp composition by sector of origin

Gdp composition by end use

Gdp composition by sector of origin
Agriculture: 6%
Industry: 30%
Services: 64% (1995 est.)

Agriculture products: wheat, barley, citrus, tomatoes, melons, olives; sheep, goats, poultry

Industries: phosphate mining, petroleum refining, cement, potash, light manufacturing

Industrial production growth rate: -3.4% (1996)

Labor force: 1.15 million
Note: in addition, there are 300,000 foreign workers (1997 est.)
By occupation industry: 11.4%
By occupation commerce restaurants and hotels: 10.5%
By occupation construction: 10%
By occupation transport and communications: 8.7%
By occupation agriculture: 7.4%
By occupation other services: 52% (1992)
Labor force

Unemployment rate: 15% official rate; note_actual rate is 25%-30% (1998 est.)

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line: 30% (1998 est.)

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share

Distribution of family income gini index

Revenues: $2.8 billion
Expenditures: $3 billion, including capital expenditures of $672 million (1999 est.)

Public debt

Taxes and other revenues


Fiscal year: calendar year

Current account balance

Inflation rate consumer prices

Central bank discount rate

Commercial bank prime lending rate

Stock of narrow money

Stock of broad money

Stock of domestic credit

Market value of publicly traded shares

Current account balance

Exports: $1.5 billion (f.o.b., 1997 est.)
Commodities: phosphates, fertilizers, potash, agricultural products, manufactures
Partners: Iraq, India, Saudi Arabia, EU, Indonesia, UAE, Syria, Ethiopia

Imports: $3.9 billion (c.i.f., 1997 est.)
Commodities: crude oil, machinery, transport equipment, food, live animals, manufactured goods
Partners: EU, Iraq, US, Japan, Turkey, Malaysia, Syria, China

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external: $7.5 billion (1998 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: Jordanian dinars (JD) per US$1_0.7090 (January 1999-1996), 0.7005 (1995), 0.6987 (1994), 0.6928 (1993)
Note: since May 1989, the dinar has been pegged to a basket of currencies

Jordan - Energy 1999
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Electricity access

Electricity production: 5.52 billion kWh (1996)
By source fossil fuel: 99.64%
By source hydro: 0.36%
By source nuclear: 0%
By source other: 0% (1996)

Electricity consumption: 5.52 billion kWh (1996)

Electricity exports: 0 kWh (1996)

Electricity imports: 0 kWh (1996)

Electricity installed generating capacity

Electricity transmission distribution losses

Electricity generation sources


Refined petroleum

Natural gas

Carbon dioxide emissions

Energy consumption per capita

Jordan - Communication 1999
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Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular

Telephone system
Domestic: microwave radio relay, coaxial and fiber-optic cable, and cellular; Jordan has two cellular telephone providers (with approximately 50,000 subscribers in 1998), ten data service providers, and four Internet service providers (with approximately 8,000 subscribers in 1998)
International: satellite earth stations_3 Intelsat, 1 Arabsat, and 29 land and maritime Inmarsat terminals (1996); coaxial cable, fiber-optic cable, and microwave radio relay to Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Syria, and Israel; building a Red Sea Fiber-Optic Link Around the Globe (FLAG) fiber-optic submarine cable link and planning to update links with Saudi Arabia and Israel to fiber-optic cable; 4,000 international circuits (1998 est.); participant in Medarabtel

Broadcast media

Internet country code

Internet users

Broadband fixed subscriptions

Jordan - Military 1999
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Military expenditures
Dollar figure: $608.9 million (FY 98)
Percent of gdp: 7.8% (1997)

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups

Jordan - Transportation 1999
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National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

Airports: 17 (1998 est.)
With paved runways total: 14
With paved runways over 3047 m: 9
With paved runways 2438 to 3047 m: 4
With paved runways under 914 m: 1 (1998 est.)
With unpaved runways total: 3
With unpaved runways 914 to 1523 m: 1
With unpaved runways under 914 m: 2 (1998 est.)

Airports with paved runways
Total: 14
Over 3047 m: 9
2438 to 3047 m: 4
Under 914 m: 1 (1998 est.)

Airports with unpaved runways
Total: 3
914 to 1523 m: 1
Under 914 m: 2 (1998 est.)


Pipelines: crude oil 209 km

Total: 677 km
Narrow gauge: 677 km 1.050-m gauge; note_an additional 110 km stretch of the old Hejaz railroad is out of use (1998 est.)



Merchant marine
Total: 7 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 42,746 GRT/59,100 DWT
Ships by type: bulk 2, cargo 2, container 1, livestock carrier 1, roll-on/roll-off cargo 1 (1998 est.)

Ports and terminals

Jordan - Transnational issues 1999
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Disputes international: none

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs

Undercover Tourist

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