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Qatar pledges $500m aid package for austerity-hit Jordan

Qatari ministers met with Jordan's King Abdullah II on Wednesday [Twitter/QNA]

Date of publication: 13 June, 2018

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The offer comes despite Jordan downgrading its diplomatic relations with Qatar since the outbreak of the Gulf crisis last June.

Qatar has offered a $500 million aid package to Jordan that includes investments, project finance and job opportunities for Jordanians, an official source said on Wednesday.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani travelled to Amman for a surprise meeting with Jordan's King Abdullah II.

Cash-strapped Jordan has been reeling from a wave of protests over IMF-driven austerity measures, including price hikes and subsidy cuts, which led to the prime minister's resignation.

The aid package includes 10,000 jobs in Qatar for Jordanians, and a sizeable investment to develop tourism and infrastructure in Jordan. 

The visit of the Qatari ministers is the first since Amman downgraded its diplomatic relations with Doha in the wake of the Saudi-led boycott beginning in June last year.

Jordan also closed of the offices of the Al Jazeera media network in the Jordanian capital after the outbreak of the Gulf crisis.

Riyadh is a key financial supporter of Jordan.

The aid package comes two days after Qatar's Gulf neighbours Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates pledged $2.5 billion of aid to Jordan.

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