On the occasion of the launch of the National Housing Initiative
Dead Sea, Jordan
26 February 2008
(Translated from Arabic)
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
May God grant you health,
I wanted to meet with you today to convey to you some of our plans and programs to address some of the challenges and difficulties facing our citizens. It has always been my conviction that responsibility for Jordan’s present and future – and for facing the challenges confronting our progress – is a mutual responsibility. Every citizen, man or woman, in this country, shoulders part of this responsibility.
Thanks to my service in the Arab Army and to my field visits and tours around the Kingdom, my knowledge and experience of people's conditions and needs has grown. I know the concerns of citizens and their problems. I know their dreams and ambitions. I certainly know that the rising price of commodities, goods, services and housing are a source of concern and suffering to the sons and daughters of the homeland. As for the rising prices of commodities, goods and services, all of us know that this is an international issue beyond our control. But I want you to be sure that we will never abandon our duty to protect citizens, and all available economic means will be employed to alleviate the negative impact of rising prices on people's lives.
As for housing, which is our topic today, I have already directed the government, in the Speech from the Throne, to designate this year as the year of housing. Studies on the status of housing in Jordan for the next five years show that social and economic security are an urgent priority. This requires that decent housing be provided for many Jordanian families.
I am here today to launch a national initiative that aims at responding to citizens needs for decent housing and a decent living. The essence of this national housing initiative joins and maximises official and unofficial civic efforts to provide housing to hundreds of thousands of citizens with limited and middle income, to public sector employees, to personnel of the armed forces and the security institutions, and to all civil service and military retirees. We will ensure that the cost of housing is affordable for families in these categories so that they might benefit from this initiative. I have directed the government to implement this initiative as soon as possible, by providing lands and infrastructure; by establishing a new financing mechanism to provide the funds necessary; and by facilitating citizens’ ownership of the homes that will be built.
His Excellency the Prime Minister will explain to you the mechanisms and details for implementing this initiative, which requires serious honest work and full cooperation from all of us.
May God bless you all, and I wish you success.
May God grant you good health.