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PM, economic team briefed on Social Security Investment Fund
By JT - Mar 02,2017 - Last updated at Mar 02,2017
AMMAN — Prime Minister Hani Mulki on Thursday highlighted the importance of pushing forward the government's efforts to stimulate the economy and boost investment, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.
In a meeting with the economic ministerial team, Mulki stressed the importance of adopting effective means to stimulate economic growth such as austerity in public spending and increasing revenues in a manner that ensures both tracks do not clash with each other.
The prime minister underlined the significance of the Social Security Investment Fund's (SSIF) national role in contributing to economic growth through low-risk investments, describing the agency as a “sovereign fund”.
He highlighted the need to figure out new ways to ensure a flow of safe investments into the fund, also noting the necessity to eliminate unfeasible investments.
For her part, SSIF Executive Chairperson Suhair Al-Ali briefed the ministerial team on the fund's assets and its performance since its establishment, in addition to the challenges it is facing and future plans.
She said the SSIF is directly affected by the Kingdom's economic growth, interest rates and the Amman Stock Exchange (ASE) market's performance. She noted that the fund's investments in the ASE made up for 11 per cent of the bourse’s market value at the end of 2016.
Al-Ali said that in August 2016, the fund established an insurance company for leasing, allocating JD400 million of the SSIF’s budget to finance its activity. This helped fund various projects across the Kingdom based on the principle of leasing.
She said that the fund, in cooperation with the Finance Ministry, is currently establishing two vital projects: the Madouneh customs centre valued at JD95 million and the Tafileh Hospital, with an estimated cost of JD40 million.
The projects will be owned by the government once all their costs are fully paid in return for leasing from the SSIF, Al-Ali explained.
Recently, the SSIF leaned towards investments with lower risks like bonds, especially those with a maturity period of 10 years.
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