The Hashemite Fund for the Jordanian Badia Development was established by the initiative of His Majesty King Abdullah II following his visit to the three desert areas, known as the Badia, in mid-2003. Its purpose is to make the Badia more attractive to its residents and eligible for investment, through the optimal utilization of natural and human resources that leads to raising the standard of living and decreasing poverty and unemployment.Objectives of the Fund:
In particular, the Fund aims to contribute to the achievement of comprehensive development in the various desert areas and to improve the standard of living of its people and the investment in human abilities and potentials, through the following:
- Establish productive projects or support their establishment and implementation
- Support scientific, cultural, athletic, educational, desert rehabilitation and social activities in the Badia and provide incentives to its creative people in different areas
- Support programmes and activities related to the preservation of the environment in coordination with the concerned authorities.
- Strengthen the developmental role of women in the desert
To achieve its objectives, the fund seeks: the implementation of productive development projects in various desert areas; simplification of access to credit facilities and the necessary technical advice; support to charities in the desert; contribution or participation in their projects; the sale of their shares or quotas; signing investment contracts with third parties or with the participation of citizens who wish to benefit from the fund's projects; and training and vocational rehabilitation for the people of the Badia, including the use of computers and modern technology.
The fund reflects His Majesty’s invitation to citizens and local community institutions to take an active role and the importance of involving the private sector in project implementation for efficient administration.
The message of the fund establishes rules of sustainable development in the Jordanian Badia with the participation of its sons and daughters themselves, through empowerment of local communities and the implementation of programmes and activities of an economic, social and environmental nature, while maintaining the unique Badia cultural and social characteristics.
Among the most prominent projects executed by the fund are: the expansion of water harvesting projects, especially in the southern and eastern areas; replacing foreign workers with Jordanians; the establishment of funds for the purpose of raising the standard of living of local communities; the provision of soft loans to citizens; strengthening the capacities of associations working in the desert areas; and strengthening the role of the private sector in sustainable expansion in the planting of fodder.
To enhance the role of the fund, the King directed the people of the Badia to set up committees to represent the three Badia areas. The committees study their own needs and problems, propose appropriate solutions, and serve as the link between the Royal Court and the Badia through frequent meetings to develop more effective solutions to poverty and unemployment and contribute to the strengthening of national institutional work.