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Careers, Jobs and Education Resources for: Jordan

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Following World War I and the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire, the UK received a mandate to govern much of the Middle East. Britain separated out a semi-autonomous region of Transjordan from Palestine in the early 1920s, and the area gained its independence in 1946; it adopted the name of Jordan in 1950. The country's long-time ruler was King HUSSEIN (1953-99). A pragmatic leader, he successfully navigated competing pressures from the major powers (US, USSR, and UK), various Arab states, Israel, and a large internal Palestinian population, despite several wars and coup attempts. In 1989 he reinstituted parliamentary elections and gradual political liberalization; in 1994 he signed a peace treaty with Israel. King ABDALLAH II, the son of King HUSSEIN, assumed the throne following his father's death in February 1999. Since then, he has consolidated his power and undertaken an aggressive economic reform program. Jordan acceded to the World Trade Organization in 2000, and began to participate in the European Free Trade Association in 2001. Municipal elections were held in July 2007 under a system in which 20% of seats in all municipal councils were reserved by quota for women. Parliamentary elections were held in November 2007 and saw independent pro-government candidates win the vast majority of seats. In November 2007, King Abdallah instructed his new prime minister to focus on socioeconomic reform, developing a healthcare and housing network for civilians and military personnel, and improving the educational system. (from the CIA)


Economic Overview

Jordan is a small arab country with insufficient supplies of water, oil, and other natural resources. poverty, unemployment, and inflation are fundamental problems, but king abdallah ii, since assuming the throne in 1999, has undertaken some broad economic reforms in a long-term effort to improve living standards. since jordan's graduation from its most recent imf program in 2002, amman has continued to follow imf guidelines, practicing careful monetary policy, making substantial headway with privatization, and opening the trade regime. jordan's exports have significantly increased under the free trade accord with the us and jordanian qualifying industrial zones (qiz), which allow jordan to export goods duty free to the us. in 2006, jordan reduced its debt-to-gdp ratio significantly. these measures have helped improve productivity and have made jordan more attractive for foreign investment. before the us-led war in iraq, jordan imported most of its oil from iraq. since 2003, however, jordan has been more dependent on oil from other gulf nations. the government ended subsidies for petroleum and other consumer goods in 2008 in an effort to control the budget. the main challenges facing jordan are reducing dependence on foreign grants, reducing the budget deficit, attracting investments, and creating jobs.

Environmental Issues

Limited natural fresh water resources; deforestation; overgrazing; soil erosion; desertification

Government Type

Constitutional monarchy


6,198,677 (july 2008 est.)


Middle east, northwest of saudi arabia


Total: 92,300 sq km land: 91,971 sq km water: 329 sq km

Slightly smaller than indiana

Country Aliases

Conventional long form: hashemite kingdom of jordan conventional short form: jordan local long form: al mamlakah al urduniyah al hashimiyah local short form: al urdun former: transjordan


Name: amman geographic coordinates: 31 57 n, 35 56 e time difference: utc+2 (7 hours ahead of washington, dc during standard time) daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last thursday in march; ends last friday in september

Military Service

17 years of age for voluntary military service; conscription at age 18 was suspended in 1999, although all males under age 37 are required to register; women not subject to conscription, but can volunteer to serve in non-combat military positions (2004)

International Disputes

Approximately two million iraqis have fled the conflict in iraq, with the majority taking refuge in syria and jordan; 2004 agreement settles border dispute with syria pending demarcation

Sources: Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)

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