* Investment will support creation of up to 10,000 new jobs
Washington D.C., October 23, 2001
—The International Finance Corporation, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group, has agreed to lend up to US$8 million for the expansion of a successful integrated industrial estate in the Amman area that will have a far-reaching developmental impact. The investment will support an important sector of Jordan’s economy and potentially create up to 10,000 new jobs.
The IFC investment in Specialized Investment Company Plc., which owns and operates Al-Tajamouat Industrial City (ATIC), will support an $18.5 million expansion project that will add 60,255 square meters of industrial space to the existing fully occupied 88,500 square meters.
ATIC, established in 1996 and located 20 kilometers from Amman, was granted the status of a “Qualifying Industrial Zone” in October 1999; this provides tenant companies with duty-and quota-free access to the U.S. market.
Mr. Sami Haddad, Director of IFC’s Middle East and North Africa Department, highlighted the project’s significant positive impact on local employment and added: “The proposed expansion project will also increase Jordan’s export competitiveness and generate important foreign currency earnings. In addition, the project will introduce new technologies and training to the Jordanian workforce in the estate.” Given its proximity to Amman, Haddad said that “ATIC will continue to boost the local economy through the increased demand for local goods and services that supply the manufacturing companies located in the estate.”
Specialized Investment Compounds Company Plc. is listed on the Amman Stock Exchange and 32% owned by the Salfiti Group. ATIC hosts more than 40 local small and medium enterprises, active in light engineering, production of plastic goods, beverages, furniture, fixtures, and distribution activities, as well as 13 large garment manufacturing companies from Pakistan, Jordan, Hong Kong, Philippines, the US, Korea, and the United Arab Emirates. Currently, ATIC employs 5,000 people.
The IFC investment is in line with the World Bank Group’s strategy for Jordan, which emphasizes the promotion of private investment and export-oriented sectors.
IFC’s mission is to promote sustainable private sector investment in developing countries, helping to reduce poverty and improve people's lives. IFC finances private sector investments in the developing world, mobilizes capital in the international financial markets, and provides technical assistance and advice to governments and businesses. Since its founding in 1956, IFC has committed more than $31 billion of its own funds and arranged $20 billion in syndications for 2,636 companies in 140 developing countries. IFC’s committed portfolio at the end of FY01 was $14.3 billion.