Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour lauded the government’s financial discipline on Thursday indicating that for the first time in more than 20 years, there was no budget supplement in 2013.

In a lecture he delivered at the King Hussein Club, he stressed diligent spending and expressed hope that the government will not ask for a budget supplement this year.

The premier said foreign direct investments (FDIs) rose in 2013 by JD1.1 billion, reaching around JD18.7 billion at the end of last year.

In 2012, FDIs rose by JD867 million, he remarked, noting that the figures are in line with the government’s plan to increase FDIs growth rate by 10 per cent annually up to 2016.

Ensour said the government has been able to strengthen relations between the public and private sectors through consultations during different stages of drawing up economic legislation.

Moreover, the government has been able to overcome a critical stage when in 2012 succeeded in boosting confidence in the local currency, he added.

At the end of November 2013, foreign reserves at the Central Bank of Jordan rose by $5.4 billion or by 81.7 per cent, amounting to $12.1 billion, compared to the figure at the end of 2012, he pointed out.

Theses reserves are enough to cover the Kingdom’s imports of goods and services for 3-6 months, the premier said.

Moreover, national exports rose by 2.5 per cent whereas imports rose by 6.1 per cent during the first 11 months of 2013 compared to the same period of 2012, Ensour added, noting that this helped maintain the commercial deficit at reasonable levels.

Estimated capital expenditures for 2014 rose to JD1,268 million compared to JD1,249 million in 2013, he continued, indicating that around 50.4 per cent of the capital expenditure would be covered by the Gulf grant.

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