Foreign grants to Jordan up in first half

15 July 2008
Foreign grants to the Jordanian government soared by 63 per cent to JD126.2m ($178.3m) during the first five months of the year, according to the Finance Ministry.

The extra money will help the Jordanian government in its efforts to manage the country’s budget deficit.

At the beginning of July, the Finance Ministry said that the budget deficit for 2008 would reach JD826m ($1.16bn), some 6.5 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP) (MEED 4:7:08).

Ministry officials had forecast a deficit of JD724m ($1.02bn), some 5.6 per cent of GDP, at the beginning of the year.

During the first five months of 2007, the Finance Ministry received JD77.6m ($109.8bn) from foreign governments.

The main donors so far this year have been the US and Saudi Arabia.

Amman has spent more than it expected on food and some fuel subsidies.

Although Amman has removed subsidies from petrol and diesel, it continues to subsidise gas used for domestic heating and cooking.

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