Economy & Business Middle East
empowerME Conversations October 4, 2022

Economies in Transition: Jordan

By Atlantic Council

In Season 3, Episode 3 of empowerME Conversations podcast, host and Atlantic Council empowerME Chairman Amjad Ahmad speaks with Jordan’s Minister of Digital Economy and Entrepreneurship H.E. Ahmad Al-Hanandeh and guest co-host BeyondCapital Managing Director Tamer Al-Salah to discuss Jordan’s current economic situation, the pivotal role investors play in growing their entrepreneurial ecosystem, and the increasing involvement of women in the Jordanian economy.


“The more you invest into your ecosystem, the more you attract other investors to come and invest in your ecosystem.”

H.E. Ahmad Al-Hanandeh, Minister of Digital Economy and Entrepreneurship

Key Takeaways

00:00 Intro

02:20 H.E. Al Hanandeh discussed the many challenges that Jordanian youth face today, including unemployment and inflation, and focused on the potential for startups to turn these challenges into opportunities.

05:30 H.E. Al Hanandeh explained that the Jordanian government’s main priority is to grow the entrepreneurial sector by helping them access new markets, obtain financing, and find new talent through Digiskills, a not-for-profit company that works to identify the exact needs to private companies.

9:59 H.E. Al Hanandeh discussed Jordan’s National Entrepreneurship Policy, which establishes the government’s commitment to provide support for the entrepreneurship sector.

22:43 H.E. Al Hanandeh identified Jordan’s current target markets as the US, UK, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE, and added that Jordan is also working to identify international and regional seminars, conferences, and fairs that can help create a roadmap for future endeavors.

26:28 H.E. Al Hanandeh discussed how the establishment of the Innovative Startups and SMEs Fund by the Jordanian government helped attract 12 VCs to Jordan, and emphasized that the more you invest, the more you attract other investors.

29:12 H.E. Al Hanandeh mentioned the need for greater contributions from seed investors.

32:18 H.E. Al Hanandeh talked about the ministry’s financing of three new tech hubs in Jordan.

34:22 H.E. Al Hanandeh explained that women are increasingly involved in startups, although women still face challenges due to lack of mobility.

35:30 Al Salah argued that the flexibility of jobs today, as well as the increase in virtual employment, has increased women’s involvement in startups, and added that the company he works for, Beyond Capital, works to support women investors and increase female engagement in the entrepreneurial sector.

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The empowerME Conversations podcast features conversations with business and government leaders shaping the Middle East. The podcast sheds light on key opportunities and challenges for companies and governments, and Season 3 will focus on government ministers driving regional economic growth. Season 3 of the empowerME Conversations podcast is powered by UPS.

Related Experts: Amjad Ahmad