“Representatives” continue to discuss “investment encouragement” amid experts’ calls for real, attractive amendments

Amman Today

publish date 2022-08-28 09:10:31

Amman – Compass

Economists called on the House of Representatives to pass real investment-attracting amendments, stressing that the amendments made to 14 articles of the “draft law regulating the investment environment for the year 2022” are still disappointing and do not constitute any real incentive to attract investors and encourage them to come to Jordan.

They stressed that real encouragement of investment should solve the deep problems that occurred to our economy and led to a reverse migration of investors, on top of which is the high cost of the economy, taxes, bank interest and social security, stressing that without a radical solution to these dilemmas, there will be no incentive for investors as the government claims.

No investment without real treatments

The economic expert, Muhammad Al-Bashir, said in statements tocompass“All the amendments that take place on legislation, and related to investment promotion laws in particular, are attempts that do not go into the depth of the crisis, which is represented in the high cost of the economy, and the reasons for it are clear and we talked about it a lot.

He pointed out that “without a real treatment of these issues, we cannot attract investments,” stressing at the same time that “all the investments that came during the last period were the result of the political activity of King Abdullah II and a reflection of it, through agreements with sovereign funds in the Gulf. For example, or some European countries.

Economist Muhammad Al-Bashir: Tax practices in Jordan express a “collection mentality” and alienate investors

Al-Bashir explained that “the reason for this is that the capital is looking for returns, and this means that it finds an appropriate economic cost in addition to the title in which they expanded a lot and they are talking about it. The influence and the spectacle that we see in tax practices.”

disastrous tax practices

Al-Bashir revealed tocompassAbout catastrophic tax practices that lead to investors rushing, he said: “Yesterday, in a tax practice on a local investor, they put on him a billion dinars in tax, and after the arbitration of the expert committee, the billion fell, and it became zero, and before that there were others, and the cases are still in the courts.”

He pointed out that “these practices that express the mentality of taxation in one way or another, and are published in the media, and all of this makes investors flee and makes the Jordanian investment environment unattractive, and the problem becomes not just a problem of texts.”

And to prove the credibility of what Al-Bashir said, he said: “Exactly when we talk about attracting investors through nationality and the practices that were carried out previously, and the results we saw were disappointing, and express that the mentality that manages things in its own way, and thus an expression of a class of beneficiaries of the existing conditions. Which is represented by multiple gains and the few who have 40 billion dinars in banks in addition to their money.”

Al-Bashir expressed his regret that “this allied political and economic class that maintains the situation in which we are living and they are happy with that, and they leave industry, agriculture and the rest of our people in this difficult situation that they pay the price for, and as a result these investors who want to come from abroad remain reluctant to invest in Jordan.”

Not up to an attractive investment law

For his part, the head of the Expatriate Businessmen and Women Association, Fadi Al-Majali, said: This law, with its recent amendments, does not rise to the level of a comprehensive and modern investment law that is capable of addressing the problems afflicting the Jordanian economy.

Al-Majali said during his speech on the “Voice of the Kingdom” program: We are talking today about low growth rates of 2%, while we need at least 5% growth, and we are talking about unemployment rates that threaten society, even if there is no very strong investment law that tempts the investor to enter With its investments and providing job opportunities, it is not possible to talk about a modern and comprehensive investment law as it is promoted that this law serves investment.

He added, “I do not think that this law serves the investment environment, and I do not think that it is able to meet and implement what was stated in the economic modernization plan launched by the royal court.”

Al-Majali continued his speech by saying: I really believe, after comparative studies with surrounding countries, that keeping the current law of 2014 is much better than this law until the drafting of a comprehensive, modern and attractive law in the literal sense, not just.

He pointed out: “Three things make me describe the law as good or not, what incentives it provides, how it tackled the problem of procedures and bureaucracy, and what this law presented to the digital revolution that leads the world and how it addressed energy problems and production costs.”

On Sunday, the House of Representatives will hold two morning and evening legislative sessions, to complete the discussion of the draft law regulating the investment environment for the year 2022, starting from Article 15.

The House of Representatives began discussing the project after the Economy and Investment Committee introduced amendments to its articles, as it approved 14 articles out of 52 of the total articles of the project, according to “The Kingdom.”

The head of the Economy and Investment Committee, Representative Khair Abu Sa’ilik, said during the session that the committee held more than 23 meetings with stakeholders in the private sector and investors, to discuss the draft law, explaining that “about 50% of the texts and articles of the project have been amended.”

The Council approved the decision of the Parliamentary Economy and Investment Committee related to Article 13 of the draft law, which granted the Council of Ministers, upon the recommendation of the Incentives and Exemptions Committee, the power to approve any incentives or exemptions for economic activities in any region of the Kingdom despite what was stated in any other legislation. Including exemptions and incentives related to the price of an allowance for selling or renting lands owned by the public treasury for the purposes of establishing economic activities, and subsidizing the costs of energy, water and renewable energy projects, as well as allowing investors to deduct the costs of establishing infrastructure services that they have delivered to the economic activity from the receivables in the event the project is operated during A certain period of time, and granting tax or customs exemptions or reductions in return for employing a minimum number of Jordanian workers.

The Council approved parliamentary proposals related to adding clause 8 to paragraph “b” of Article 13 related to incentives, stipulating “activities targeting the poorest parties and areas for the development of the local community.”

The House of Representatives approved Article 14 of the draft law, which gave the Council of Ministers, upon the recommendation of the Incentives and Exemptions Committee, the power to grant a single approval to establish a project for an investor, if this project constitutes a strategic economic activity that contributes to achieving sustainable development, so that the approval is considered an alternative to any license or permit or permission required by any legislation.

The article also stipulated that the approval granted to establish the project, transfer its ownership or lease it to others may not be waived except with the approval of the Council of Ministers, based on the recommendation of the Incentives and Exemptions Committee.

According to the draft law, the Council voted to approve the formation of the Investment Council as stated by the committee headed by the Prime Minister, the Minister of Investment as Vice President, and the membership of the Ministers of Planning and International Cooperation, Finance, Industry and Trade, Supply, Digital Economy and Entrepreneurship, the Governor of the Central Bank, and the Chairman of the Chamber of Commerce Jordan.

The composition of the council also includes the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Jordan Chamber of Industry, and four representatives from the private sector, including a businesswoman and three representatives from the agricultural, tourism and financial services sectors. The membership of any of them may be terminated by appointing a replacement for the remainder of his membership in the same manner.

According to the draft law, the Investment Council undertakes a number of tasks represented in approving the investment policy that includes priority targeted sectors and projects in accordance with the state’s general policy, economic vision, and economic and social executive plans and programmes, approving the investment map of the Kingdom and following up on its updating, and discussing reports related to the implementation of plans, strategies and programs related to investment. and guidance on it.

The Investment Council also directs to take everything necessary to develop the investment environment in the Kingdom, recommend legislative and regulatory amendments necessary to improve the investment environment, and decide on disputes that may arise between official authorities regarding the investment environment and any other matters related to investment, except for the powers of the Ministry of Investment.

The council voted to approve the proposal submitted by Representative Khaled Abu Hassan on paragraph “d” of Article 8, which stipulates that “the council meets at the invitation of its president at least once every three months, and its meeting is legal in the presence of no less than the majority of its members, and it takes its decisions by the majority of the votes of its members.” ’, where “…takes his decisions by the majority of votes of its members” was crossed out and replaced with “… takes his decisions with two-thirds of the votes of its members”.

The articles of the draft law included freedom of ownership, with the exception of economic activities restricted by virtue of a system, and the use of non-Jordanians in administrative and technical jobs that require specialized skills at a rate of no more than 25% of the total number of workers, and this percentage may be raised to no more than 40% in the absence of The possibility of providing Jordanian labor for these jobs, in addition to other items related to money transfers.

It also included that it is not permissible to expropriate any investment or part of it except in accordance with the law and for a general, specific and legitimate purpose and in a non-developmental manner in exchange for paying fair compensation to the investor, taking into account that the payment is in Jordanian dinars or in a convertible currency, and that it is equal to the fair market value of the assets concerned before a decision is taken. expropriation, and that the interest rate includes the equivalent of one-night guaranteed financing.

The Council also agreed by text to prepare a draft investment map for the Kingdom that identifies the available investment opportunities according to sectors and governorates, including partnership projects with the private sector, in coordination and cooperation with the concerned authorities, provided that updating is carried out on a continuous basis.


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Parliament of Jordan

Source : اخبار الاردن

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