UNHCR: Jordan issued record number of work permits for Syrian refugees in 2021
Jordan has issued a record 62,000 work permits for Syrian refugees in 2021, according to figures published by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) on Tuesday.
This is the highest annual number of work permits issued for Syrian refugees in Jordan since they were introduced in 2016.
“Refugees can and should play an important role in the Jordanian economy,” said UNHCR Jordan representative Dominic Bartsch.
“Allowing refugees to work also reduces the need to rely on humanitarian aid, such as cash grants, which could be channelled to support the most vulnerable among them,” he said.
The permits came about after the international community pledged to fund and expand trade facilitation under the Jordan Compact, an initiative designed to improve access to education and legal employment for Syrians forced to flee their homes since the onset of civil war in their home country a decade ago.
Initially, Syrian refugees in Jordan were mostly permitted to work only in the agriculture, construction and manufacturing fields.
Exemptions to work in some other sectors, including healthcare, were granted last year.
Since July 2021, Syrian refugees have been able to get work permits in all sectors open to non-Jordanians.
Jordan hosts 760,000 refugees and asylum seekers registered with UNHCR, including 670,000 from Syria.