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Royal Hashemite Court (Jordan)

King To Meet Arab and Foreign Investors via Satellite
Amman, 10 December 2002

His Majesty King Abdullah II launches a satellite dialogue on Wednesday evening with leading investors and businessmen from Washington, London, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Cairo, Manama and Kuwait.

The dialogue, which sheds light on the private sector's role in economic development and the investment climate in Jordan, is the first activity in the course of the joint Jordanian-U.S. Committee meetings that will open Wednesday following the dialogue to review the Free Trade Agreement between Jordan and the United States after the elapse of one year of its coming into force.

United Arab Emirates media gave special attention to the dialogue led by King Abdullah with daily papers front-page commentaries highlighting the inviting investment ambiance in the Kingdom.

Since the Free Trade Agreement came into effect, Jordan's exports to the U.S. market rose by 72% whereas Jordan's imports from U.S. goods grew up by 14%.

The satellite dialogue will include Industry and Trade Minister Salah Edine al-Bashir and U.S. Trade representative Robert Zeleck.

Jordanian and U.S. officials will hold a one-day session to discuss issues relevant to the Free Trade Agreement including rules of origin, intellectual property rights and environment cooperation.

Bashir, who will head Jordan delegation to the Joint Committee meeting, said His Majesty King Abdullah will outline among other topics the investment climate in Jordan and the markets open to Jordanian products specially those made available through the Free Trade Agreement with the U.S. as well as the regulatory trade arrangements with the EU member states and with the Arab countries in particular through the Arab Free Trade.

Speaking to Petra on the phone, Bashir said the dialogue with King Abdullah will also focus on plans and programs designed to improve the investment climate in the Kingdom.

On the joint committee meeting, Bashir said the meeting, the first since the Free Trade Agreement came into effect, will review ways to implement the agreement including some technical issues that will help increase trade volume between the two countries.

During last year, the highest growth rate in Jordanian exports was to the U.S. market, Bashir told Petra. There would be a good opportunity for ten to sixteen Jordanian firms to export their products to the United States this month, he added.