His Majesty King Abdullah II on Saturday launched the 2013 Jordan-U.S. Business Forum, a gathering that brought together key private and public sector leaders to enhance partnerships and explore and seize business opportunities in Jordan and the region.
The king said in an opening address that the region is going through a critical moment of turmoil that makes it incumbent upon economic decision-makers to define their options and explore opportunities to achieve the aspired-for growth, which highlights the importance and urgency of "smart choices." Such choices, he said, lie in defining where to invest? who to partner with? and where to set up technology centres or trade installations or support offices? adding that Jordan is a "smart choice" as an investment haven that opens the gates to mega economic blocs at the level of the world's major continents.
His Majesty told the business leaders that the smart choices they make today will be beneficial for them and for millions of people, adding: "by these choices, you send a clear message: We can provide opportunities of a better future for the two countries." He said Jordan had been aware of the pivotal role of the private sector and global partners in addressing the challenges of achieving economic security and overall economic growth and creating jobs.
"I am particularly interested in providing job opportunities for Jordanian youth who are a majority of our population and have lots of talents and skills and their potentials deserve to be boosted and their aspirations fulfilled," he said.
The King said Jordan takes pride in a democratic evolution model based on pluralism, accord and peaceful approach, adding: "this is the Jordanian model embracing transparency and good governance in a climate of pluralism, openness, tolerance and moderation." His Majesty said the Kingdom's model aims to achieve equal opportunity for all, protect civil liberties and political rights, enhance the separation of powers and encourage political participation, adding that "our Jordanian Spring" had been an occasion to develop the underpinnings, rules and disciplines of democratic transformation.
During the three-day forum, around 100 U.S. companies operating in the of commerce, information technology, energy and health services along with a large number of local firms, will examine the possibility of launching joint economic projects. The first Jordanian-U.S. Business Forum was held in May 2011 to build on joint accomplishments achieved since the signing of the Jordan-U.S. Free Trade Accord.