President Barroso meets King Abdullah II of Jordan
On Wednesday, President Barroso met with the King Abdullah II of Jordan. The EU has been developing a close partnership with Jordan, grounded on an Association Agreement, in force since 2002.
During this meeting, President Barroso supported further deepening of the EU-Jordan relations in the area of trade and investment, by offering the possibility to negotiate a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA). This would have a tangible impact on the Jordanian economy in terms of boosting investment and supporting the ongoing process of domestic economic reform.
The two leaders also discussed mobility issues, in particular launching negotiations for a Mobility Partnership in January 2014.
President Barroso and King Abdullah II also addressed the Macro-Financial Assistance operation of up to € 180 million, which the EU is preparing in response to Jordan's request. This assistance would take the form of a medium-term loan, and Jordan would be the first partner country in the Southern neighbourhood to benefit from this exceptional financial instrument. Furthermore, the EU has significantly increased the development assistance to Jordan (€ 101 million additional funds from the SPRING programme since 2011) which brings the EU bilateral co-operation with Jordan to €324 million for the period 2011-2013.
As Jordan is a key player in the Middle East, President Barroso and King Abdullah II addressed the promotion of peace, stability and prosperity in the region. On Syria, President Barroso offered his views on humanitarian and development assistance in response to the Syria crisis, which is close to €2 billion. Furthermore, the EU support for refugees and host communities in Jordan sums up to € 224 million. The leaders also exchanged views on the Geneva II conference, to be convened on January 2014.