Jordan

Jordanian PM sets the next stage for dealing with COVD-19

Prime Minister Omar Razzaz said, “We are seeking to succeed in countering the economic repercussions of the coronavirus and have succeeded in addressing the health consequences of the disease.”

“We have succeeded, thank God so far, in dealing with the repercussions of coronavirus through collective action for prevention and limiting the disease and its repercussions,” the prime minister said in a press statement Tuesday evening.

He pointed out that “the economic repercussions require the same level of collective action and partnership from us.”

The prime minister thanked the citizens for their patience, commitment, and great cooperation during the past weeks, pointing out that the health minister informed him that no Covid-19 infections have been reported the eighth day in a row, stressing that “We must be careful with the coronavirus pandemic despite the absence of new infections.”

Razzaz lauded the efforts of the Jordan Armed Forces, security bodies and medical personnel in eliminating the pandemic, stressing that the immediate response stage to deal with the pandemic included early curfew, the development of random inspection mechanisms, and the development of quarantine and treatment mechanisms.

The prime minister said, “We have accomplished a lot thanks to His Majesty’s leadership, careful follow-up, citizen awareness, and his commitment to the foundations of prevention, distancing and protection from the coronavirus pandemic.”

He added that “we studied three global tracks to deal with the pandemic, and we have chosen to rely on the track that witnesses a small number of infections but imposes strict measures.”

He added that “the first and frightening scenario that we studied carefully, through which the number of infections would at its peak reach more than 600 infections per day and this could’ve led to a severe weakness in our health system’s capacity, while infections within the second scenario would reach about 200.

“As for what we aspired to and strive for, was a third track in which we depend on the level of awareness among citizens and our capabilities in the health sector and our various bodies, which reaches 150 cases at the maximum.”

He said that the first scenario meant that the cases reached about 26,000 and about 2000 death cases, the second cases amounted to 9,600 cases and about 700 deaths, and the third was 4,000 infections and 300 deaths, stressing that “our numbers today are 465 injuries and 9 deaths.”

He pointed out that the highest number of infections recorded in one day was on March 26, when it reached 40 cases, and it wasn’t for the strict procedures and quick response, the cases would’ve increased alarmingly.”

The prime minister affirmed that Jordan’s dealing with the pandemic since its first stage was based on the immediate response and royal directives, which stated not to delay taking any decision related to the health of Jordanians, then the stage of solidarity that we are dealing with now and the third related to recovery.

Razzaz explained that the coping and solidarity stage included distance learning and working, gradual opening of sectors and mitigation of closure, stressing that “we may return to the stage of closure and strict procedures in case of recording new infections.”

He pointed out that “in the solidarity stage, the umbrella of beneficiaries from the National Aid Fund was expanded by including 155,000 new families and we are seeking to include about 200,000 others and expand social security programs to benefit the unemployed, and about 11,000 new facilities have registered with the social security,” adding that with the efforts of citizens and the private sector, the Himmat Watan Fund was created, whose assets are now about JD81 million.

In this regard, he stressed that the highest principles of governance and transparency are applied, and the Fund’s operations are subject to external monitoring and audit of its assets and outputs.

The prime minister indicated that “the third stage that we have now initiated in cooperation with the private sector is the recovery and resilience stage to help institutions, establishments and companies,” pointing out that a study is being made to create an investment fund to help promising companies by pumping an investment in their capital.

He pointed out that this issue is being studied extensively in partnership with the central bank, banks and the private sector, and with the government’s contribution.

Razzaz said that the whole world will enter a different stage in its nature, stressing that the electronic transformation and digital economy have become a necessity as is the case with the expansion of comprehensive health insurance that the government started with before this pandemic, as well as including all workers in the social security.

He underlined the necessity of moving towards more self-reliance, and this requires controlling government spending and eliminating administrative flabbiness by merging a group of ministries, institutions and bodies.

He said, “We need to employ our youth because the unemployment figures are high and they are expected to rise, and we are working on an integrated program to employ the youth and avoid a significant increase in unemployment,” noting that resilience requires a national plan for strategic storage in all basic materials.

Razzaz underscored the importance of relying on energy production, food processing, and the development of medicine, tools and medical devices, adding that “we are proud of our production sector, especially the industrial sector, which has proven its efficiency worldwide.”

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