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QIZs prove to be engines of economic growth
Apr '10
Qualified Industrial Zones (QIZs) in Jordan have proved to be engines of economic growth for the Arab kingdom. By using a percentage of key inputs, sourced from neighbouring Israel, the goods produced in the QIZs, qualify for duty-free access to the biggest market in the world, the US.

There are around 13 QIZs spread across the kingdom, in which 109 companies have set up shop, which in all provide employment to over 36,000 people, necessarily not all Jordanians. This is so, because the local workforce lacks the skills to work in the factories, according to an expert.

Most of the units which have been set up are mainly from the textile and clothing sector and manufacture for globally renowned brands like Calvin Klein, Victoria's Secret, Nike and Reebok. Along with generating employment, these QIZs are also major export revenue generators.

Exports from the Jordanian QIZs to the US have shot up 100-fold, from $15 million in 1997 to peak at $1.5 billion in 2006, or roughly 20 percent of the country's gross domestic product. Ten Israeli factories have set up factories in the QIZs and most of the exports are even routed through Israel, to save costs.

However, now Jordan has struck a new trade agreement with the US, under which, products manufactured anywhere in Jordan, even from outside the QIZs, gain duty-free access to the US markets. Jordan has also struck similar trade deals with Canada and Turkey.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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