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King calls for comprehensive plan to develop tourism, agriculture in Madaba

Jordan Daily – His Majesty King Abdullah visited Madaba on Tuesday and met with a number of local community leaders in the governorate.

At the meeting, attended by His Royal Highness Crown Prince Al Hussein bin Abdullah II, King Abdullah said Madaba has great potential in tourism and agriculture, calling for devising a plan, in partnership with the local community, to develop these sectors and alleviate poverty and unemployment.

His Majesty urged more focus on agriculture in Madaba and in Dhiban District, especially wheat and grain cultivation, to enhance Jordan’s food security.

The King stressed the need to improve services for tourists in order to extend their stay, especially to meet the rise in the number of Madaba visitors, which doubled compared to last year.

Attendees expressed appreciation for His Majesty’s directives to move forward with modernisation, his keenness on enhancing the quality of services for Jordanians, and his positions in support of the Palestinians and commitment to the Hashemite Custodianship of Islamic and Christian holy sites in Jerusalem, highlighting some of Madaba’s needs and concerns.

For his part, Prime Minister Bisher Khasawneh said the government seeks to develop the Fortress of Machaerus as a key tourist destination and to connect it to the Baptism Site, as part of the Vatican-approved Christian pilgrimage trail, adding that the government is studying introducing more incentives for investors at the industrial city in Madaba.

Royal Hashemite Court Chief Yousef Issawi said projects that were implemented in Madaba as part of royal initiatives have so far exceeded JD23 million in value, covering education, youth empowerment, health care, and social and municipal services, in addition to supporting productive projects.

Director of the Office of His Majesty Jafar Hassan, Adviser to His Majesty for Tribal Affairs Atef Hajaya, Interior Minister Mazen Farraya, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Maj. Gen. Yousef Huneiti, Public Security Directorate Director Maj. Gen. Obaidallah Maaytah, and Madaba Governor Nayef Hedayat attended the meeting.

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