S&P Confirms Jordan's Steady Credit Rating | Kanebridge News
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S&P Confirms Jordan’s Steady Credit Rating

Amid regional disturbances and worldwide geopolitical instabilities, Standard & Poor’s (S&P) has confirmed Jordan’s long-term sovereign credit rating at B+/B, assigning it a stable outlook.

Mon, Mar 11, 2024 5:20pmGrey Clock 2 min

This announcement emphasizes remarkable resilience at a time when many countries are facing declines in their credit ratings.  Jordan‘ solid credit position serves as evidence of its effective financial tactics, vital for maintaining financial stability, promoting fiscal responsibility, and progressively lowering its national debt, even amid the challenges posed by the region’s instability.

 

Strong financial policies and international support

S&P attributes Jordan’s stability to the country’s wise fiscal management and strong monetary policies. The country has effectively maintained stability in its monetary and banking systems, especially in response to international disturbances like the Gaza conflict.

Key to this achievement are Jordan’s financial and monetary reforms, strengthened by substantial support from an International Monetary Fund (IMF) program and international donors. The IMF’s provision of $1.2 billion over four years through its Extended Fund Facility highlights this funding.

S&P anticipates significant fiscal progress, forecasting a reduction in the general government deficit to 1.1% of GDP by 2024 and a decrease in the net debt ratio to 78.9% by 2027. Post-conflict, an increase of $900 million in foreign reserves is expected, along with a decrease in the current account deficit to GDP ratio from 7.2% in 2020-2022 to 4.5% in 2024-2027.

Finance Minister, Mohammad Al-Ississ

Finance Minister, Mohammad Al-Ississ, considers this confirmation as global recognition of Jordan’s strong fiscal management and policy effectiveness, apart from the challenges posed by the conflict in Gaza and the ongoing tensions in the West Bank.

The Central Bank Governor, Adel Sharkas

The Central Bank Governor, Adel Sharkas, points out that the stable rating and outlook reflect the nation’s economic resilience, upheld by the Central Bank’s dedication to monetary and financial stability. This includes keeping the Jordanian dinar’s exchange rate steady, supported by substantial foreign reserves now totaling $18.1 billion. These efforts have made the dinar more attractive, reduced the rate of dollarization to its lowest point since 2016 at 17.7%, and maintained inflation at levels that support economic activity. Sharkas also praised the Jordanian banking sector’s capacity for risk management and its commitment to the highest banking practices.



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Preparatory Work for UAE to Oman Hafeet Rail Project Commences at Full Speed

Preparations have begun on the transformative UAE to Oman Hafeet Rail network, revealing significant construction details during a site visit.

Thu, May 16, 2024 3 min

The $3bn Hafeet Rail project between the UAE and Oman will feature 60 bridges and a 2.5km tunnel, making it an “architectural and engineering marvel,” according to CEO Ahmed Al Musawa Al Hashemi.

Hafeet Rail has announced that preparatory work is moving full speed ahead for constructing the transformative railway link between the UAE and Oman. This announcement was made during a site visit attended by key officials, members of the Asyad and Hafeet Rail executive management teams, project contractors, and consultants.

Key Highlights

During the visit, attendees were introduced to the main components of the project, including passenger, repair, and shipping stations, as well as major bridges and tunnel sites.

The Hafeet Rail project is set to play a very important role in enhancing local and regional trade, unlocking new opportunities in the infrastructure, transportation, and logistics sectors, and fostering economic diversification. It will also strengthen bilateral relations between the UAE and Oman.

The project will involve constructing 60 bridges, some reaching heights of up to 34 meters, and tunnels extending 2.5 kilometres. The Hafeet Rail team showcased the latest rail technologies and innovative engineering and architectural solutions designed to navigate the challenging geographical terrain and weather conditions while maintaining high standards of efficiency and safety.

The rail network will boost various industrial sectors and economic activities and significantly impact the tourism industry by facilitating easier and faster travel between the two countries.

Ahmed Al Bulushi, Asyad Group Chief Executive Asset, noted that the project’s rapid progress reflects the commitment of the UAE and Oman to developing and realizing the project’s multifaceted benefits.

Investment and Future Impact

Al Bulushi added that investments in developing local capabilities and expertise in rail-related disciplines over recent years have enabled the project to reach the implementation phase successfully under the leadership of highly efficient and professional national talent.

Hafeet Rail’s CEO Ahmed Al Musawa Al Hashemi emphasized, “The commencement of preparatory works for construction is a testament to the robust synergy between all parties involved in both nations, achieving this milestone in record time. We are confidently laying down the right tracks thanks to the shareholders of Hafeet Rail and the expertise of local companies in Oman and the UAE, alongside international partners.”

During the site visit, the visitors explored some of the key preparatory sites, including Wadi Al Jizi, where a 700-meter-long bridge towering 34 meters will be constructed. This ambitious project is envisioned as an architectural and engineering marvel in a complex geographical landscape.

Future phases will require more collaboration, with a continued focus on quality, safety, and environmental considerations in line with the international industry best practices.

The Hafeet Rail project represents the first-of-its-kind railway network linking two Gulf nations, marking a significant shift in regional goods transportation. This efficient and reliable transportation option will reduce dependence on slower and less sustainable road transport.

Hafeet Rail promises a 40% reduction in shipping costs and a 50% in transit times compared to traditional land transportation methods, as it will be connecting five major ports and several industrial and free zones in both countries.

This shift will reduce reliance on road transport by cars and trucks and promote more sustainable shipping practices. The establishment of the railway network will also create significant opportunities for SMEs in construction, engineering, and logistics support, acting as a catalyst for economic growth and innovation within the domestic economy.

By linking major ports, the Hafeet Rail project will enable local SMEs to import, export, and distribute their products more effectively, enhancing their market reach and global competitiveness.

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