Home / OPINION / Analysis / An aggravating economy; a contested political reform!

An aggravating economy; a contested political reform!

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Eng. Saleem Al Batayneh

In Webster’s Dictionary of Political Terms, political reform is defined as a process of modifying the form of governance within a state and its existing political framework, aiming to shift from a culture of submission to one of participation.

The challenge of modernizing Jordan’s political and economic system differs from reform models in other countries. It is marred by clandestine dealings and a lack of transparency, leaving citizens unable to question or criticize.

The dire economic situation in Jordan, with its severe consequences, can no longer be overlooked. Professionals in economics, finance, and development cannot ignore the pressing need for resilience. However, the opinions of specialists differ from the official narrative, highlighting the enigmatic nature of Jordan’s economic system—a rentier economy dependent on aid and loans.

The economic liberal approach, championed by inexperienced individuals, has resulted in clientelism and corruption, causing chaos, weakening institutions, and limiting political options. Jordan’s policies have become hostage to external influences, impeding diplomatic maneuverability.

Political inflation, a developmental deficit, and economic confusion are evident. Political and economic reform requires genuine political spaces and proper terminology control. Reviving the economy demands planning, effort, and stable political climates. As politics governs economic choices, reforming the economic system necessitates prior political reform.

To protect the Jordanian economy, severing political ties with influential groups, companies, banks, and financial institutions is vital.

The element of surprise and time pressure is unique to Jordan, with reforms implemented haphazardly. Genuine change requires listening to the people and addressing their concerns to avert further hardship.

The call for reform has both advocates and adversaries. The majority, seeking reform and justice, faces powerful opposition from the minority, benefiting from political inheritance. Their influence obstructs reform by safeguarding their privileges.

The current political environment, burdened by a sluggish culture, resists reform, making it challenging to bridge the gap between reality and aspirations. Overcoming economic crises necessitates a holistic approach to human development, focusing on poverty, unemployment, education, health, and transportation.

For meaningful reform, a new economic model must ensure a fair distribution of resources. Corruption has undermined development strategies, leading to wealth disparities.

As uncertainty looms, comprehensive reform must replace stopgap measures. Jordan’s stability hinges on internal strength, prioritizing human development and addressing societal challenges.

The road to reform requires careful consideration of political thought and a commitment to addressing poverty, unemployment, education, health, and transportation. A fair and equitable economic model is essential to steer Jordan away from the brink of disaster.

Amidst doubt and uncertainty, substantive reforms hold the key to dispelling question marks and fostering a brighter future for Jordan and its people.

Al Batayneh is a former Member of the Jordanian Parliament