Jordan 2003Jordan

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Iberostar Hotels

Jordan - Introduction 2003
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Background: For most of its history since independence from British administration in 1946 Jordan was ruled by King HUSSEIN (1953-99). 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. King ABDALLAH II - the eldest son of King HUSSEIN and Princess MUNA - assumed the throne following his father's death in February 1999. Since then he has consolidated his power and established his domestic priorities including an aggressive economic reform program. Jordan acceded to the World Trade Organization in January 2000 and signed free trade agreements with the United States in 2000 and with the European Free Trade Association in 2001.

Jordan - Geography 2003
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Location: Middle East northwest of Saudi Arabia

Geographic coordinates: 31 00 N 36 00 E

Map referenceMiddle East

Total: 92,300 km²
Water: 329 km²
Land: 91,971 km²
Comparative: slightly smaller than Indiana

Land boundaries
Total: 1,635 km
Border countries: (5) Iraq 181 km; , Israel 238 km; , Saudi Arabia 744 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 1,734 m

Natural resources: phosphates potash shale oil
Land use

Land use
Arable land: 2.87%
Permanent crops: 1.52%
Other: 95.61% (1998 est.)

Irrigated land: 750 km² (1998 est.)

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards: droughts; periodic earthquakes

Note: strategic location at the head of the Gulf of Aqaba and as the Arab country that shares the longest border with Israel and the occupied West Bank

Jordan - People 2003
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Population: 5,460,265 (July 2003 est.)
Growth rate: 2.78% (2003 est.)
Below poverty line: 30% (2001 est.)

Noun: Jordanian
Adjective: Jordanian

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

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

Religions: Sunni Muslim 92% Christian 6% (majority Greek Orthodox but some Greek and Roman Catholics Syrian Orthodox Coptic Orthodox Armenian Orthodox and Protestant denominations) other 2% (several small Shi'a Muslim and Druze populations) (2001 est.)

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure
0-14 years: 35.9% (male 1,001,174; female 959,157)
15-64 years: 60.5% (male 1,764,061; female 1,541,453)
65 years and over: 3.6% (male 95,566; female 98,854) (2003 est.)

Dependency ratios

Median age
Total: 21.8 years
Male: 22.4 years
Female: 21.1 years (2002)

Population growth rate: 2.78% (2003 est.)

Birth rate: 23.68 births/1000 population (2003 est.)

Death rate: 2.62 deaths/1000 population (2003 est.)

Net migration rate: 6.78 migrant(s)/1000 population (2003 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, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, 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/female
Under 15 years: 1.04 male/female
15-64 years: 1.14 male/female
65 years and over: 0.97 male/female
Total population: 1.1 male/female (2003 est.)

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate
Total: 18.86 deaths/1000 live births
Female: 14.98 deaths/1000 live births (2003 est.)
Male: 22.51 deaths/1000 live births

Life expectancy at birth
Total population: 77.88 years
Male: 75.42 years
Female: 80.5 years (2003 est.)

Total fertility rate: 3 children born/woman (2003 est.)

Contraceptive prevalence rate

Drinking water source

Current health expenditure

Physicians density

Hospital bed density

Sanitation facility access

Adult prevalence rate: less than 0.1% (2001 est.)
People living with hivaids: less than 1000
Deaths: NA

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: 91.3%
Male: 95.9%
Female: 86.3% (2003 est.)

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment

Jordan - Government 2003
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Country name
Conventional long form: Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan
Conventional short form: Jordan
Local short form: Al Urdun
Local long form: Al Mamlakah al Urduniyah al Hashimiyah
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: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch
Chief of state: King ABDALLAH II (since 7 February 1999); Crown Prince HAMZAH (half brother of the monarch, born 29 March 1980)
Head of government: Prime Minister Faisal al-FAYEZ (since 25 October 2003)
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
Elections: House of Representatives - last held 17 June 2003, next to be held NA 2007
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; political parties were not legalized until 1992; King Abdallah delayed the 2001 elections until 2003
Election results: House of Representatives - percent of vote by party - independents and others 89.6%, Islamic Action Front 10.4%; seats by party - independents and others 92, Islamic Action Front 18 (note - one of the six quota seats was given to a female IAF candidate)

Judicial branch: Court of Cassation; Supreme Court (court of final appeal)

Political parties and leaders: Al-Umma (Nation) Party [Ahmad al-HANANDEH secretary general]; Arab Land Party [Dr. Muhammad al-'ORAN secretary general]; Communist Party [Munir HAMARINAH secretary general]; Constitutional Front [Mahdi al-TALL secretary general]; Jordanian Democratic Popular Unity Party [Sa'id DHIYAB secretary general]; Jordanian Progressive Party [Fawwaz al-ZUBI secretary general]; Jordanian People's Democratic (Hashd) Party [Salim al-NAHHAS secretary general]; Islamic Action Front [Hazma MANSOUR secretary general]; National Action (Haqq) Party [Muhammad al-ZUBI secretary general]; National Constitutional Party [Abdul Hadi MAJALI secretary general]; (Arab) Socialist Ba'th Party [Taysif al-HIMSI secretary general]; Pan-Arab (Democratic) Movement [Mahmud al-NUWAYHI secretary general]


Diplomatic representation
In the us chief of mission: Ambassador Karim Tawfiq KAWAR
In the us chancery: 3,504 International Drive NW, Washington, DC 20,008
In the us fax: [1] (202) 966-3,110
In the us telephone: [1] (202) 966-2,664
From the us chief of mission: Ambassador Edward William GNEHM, Jr.
From the us embassy: Abdoun, Amman
From the us mailing address: P. O. Box 354, Amman 11,118 Jordan; Unit 70,200, Box 5, APO AE 9,892-0200
From the us telephone: [962] (6) 5,920,101
From the us fax: [962] (6) 5,920,121

Flag descriptionflag of Jordan: three equal horizontal bands of black (top the Abbassid Caliphate of Islam) white (the Ummayyad Caliphate of Islam) and green (the Fatimid Caliphate of Islam) with a red isosceles triangle (representing the Great Arab Revolt of 1916) based on the hoist side bearing a small white seven-pointed star symbolizing the seven verses of the opening Sura (Al-Fatiha) of the Holy Koran; the seven points on the star represent faith in One God humanity national spirit humility social justice virtue and aspirations

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage

Jordan - Economy 2003
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Economy overview: Jordan is a small Arab country with inadequate supplies of water and other natural resources such as oil. Debt poverty and unemployment are fundamental problems but King ABDALLAH since assuming the throne in 1999 has undertaken some broad economic reforms in a long-term effort to improve living standards. Amman in the past three years has worked closely with the IMF practiced careful monetary policy and made significant headway with privatization. The government also has liberalized the trade regime sufficiently to secure Jordan's membership in the WTrO (2000) a free trade accord with US (2000) and an association agreement with the EU (2001). These measures have helped improve productivity and have put Jordan on the foreign investment map. The US-led war in Iraq in 2003 dealt an economic blow to Jordan which was dependent on Iraq for discounted oil. It remains unclear how Jordan will finance energy imports in the absence of such a deal. Other ongoing challenges include fiscal adjustment to reduce the budget deficit and broader investment incentives to promote job-creating ventures.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate: 4.9% (2002 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: 3.7%
Industry: 26%
Services: 70.3% (2001 est.)

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

Industries: phosphate mining pharmaceuticals petroleum refining cement potash light manufacturing pharmaceuticals tourism

Industrial production growth rate: 1% (2002 est.)

Labor force: 1.36 million (2002)
By occupation services: 82.5%
By occupation industry: 12.5%
By occupation agriculture: 5% (2001 est.)
Labor force

Unemployment rate: 16% official rate; actual rate is 25%-30% (2001 est.)

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line: 30% (2001 est.)

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share
Lowest 10: 3.3%
Highest 10: 29.8% (1997)

Distribution of family income gini index: 36.4 (1997)

Revenues: $2.7 billion
Expenditures: $3 billion, including capital expenditures of $614 million (2002 est.)

Public debt

Taxes and other revenues


Fiscal year: calendar year

Current account balance

Inflation rate consumer prices: 3.3% (2002 est.)

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: $2.5 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Commodities: phosphates fertilizers potash agricultural products manufactures pharmaceuticals
Partners: Iraq 20.1% US 14.5% India 8.1% Saudi Arabia 5.4% Israel 4.4% (2002)

Imports: $4.4 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Commodities: crude oil machinery transport equipment food live animals manufactured goods
Partners: Iraq 13.4% Germany 8.8% US 8% China 6% France 4.2% UK 4.1% Italy 4.1% (2002)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external: $8.2 billion (2002 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: Jordanian dinars per US dollar - 0.71 (2002) 0.71 (2001) 0.71 (2000) 0.71 (1999) 0.71 (1998)

Jordan - Energy 2003
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Electricity access

Electricity production: 7.091 billion kWh (2001)
By source fossil fuel: 99.4%
By source hydro: 0.6%
By source other: 0% (2001)
By source nuclear: 0%

Electricity consumption: 6.86 billion kWh (2001)

Electricity exports: 2 million kWh (2001)

Electricity imports: 267 million kWh (2001)

Electricity installed generating capacity

Electricity transmission distribution losses

Electricity generation sources


Refined petroleum

Natural gas
Production: 290 million m³ (2001 est.)
Consumption: 290 million m³ (2001 est.)
Exports: 0 m³ (2001 est.)
Imports: 0 m³ (2001 est.)
Proved reserves: 3.256 billion m³ (37,257)

Carbon dioxide emissions

Energy consumption per capita

Jordan - Communication 2003
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Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular: 11,500 (1995)

Telephone system
General assessment: service has improved recently with the increased use of digital switching equipment, but better access to the telephone system is needed in the rural areas and easier access to pay telephones is needed by the urban public
Domestic: microwave radio relay transmission and coaxial and fiber-optic cable are employed on trunk lines; considerable use of mobile cellular systems; Internet service is available
International: satellite earth stations - 3 Intelsat, 1 Arabsat, and 29 land and maritime Inmarsat terminals; fiber-optic cable to Saudi Arabia and microwave radio relay link with Egypt and Syria; connection to international submarine cable FLAG (Fiber-Optic Link Around the Globe); participant in MEDARABTEL; international links total about 4,000

Broadcast media

Internet country code: .jo

Internet users: 212,000 (2002)

Broadband fixed subscriptions

Jordan - Military 2003
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Military expenditures
Dollar figure: $757.5 million (FY01)
Percent of gdp: 8.6% (FY01)

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups

Jordan - Transportation 2003
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National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

Airports: 17 (2002)
With paved runways total: 15
With paved runways over 3047 m: 7
With paved runways 2438 to 3047 m: 6
With paved runways under 914 m: 1 (2002)
With paved runways 914 to 1523 m: 1
With unpaved runways total: 2
With unpaved runways under 914 m: 2 (2002)

Airports with paved runways
Total: 15
Over 3047 m: 7
2438 to 3047 m: 6
Under 914 m: 1 (2002)
914 to 1523 m: 1

Airports with unpaved runways
Total: 2
Under 914 m: 2 (2002)

Heliports: 2 (2002)

Pipelines: gas 10 km; oil 743 km (2003)

Total: 505 km
Narrow gauge: 505 km 1.050-m gauge (2002)


Waterways: none

Merchant marine
Total: 9 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 63,522 GRT/79,776 DWT
Ships by type: cargo 3, container 1, refrigerated cargo 1, roll on/roll off 3, short-sea passenger 1
Note: includes some foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of convenience: Greece 6 (2002 est.)

Ports and terminals

Jordan - Transnational issues 2003
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Disputes international: none

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs


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