Poverty rate*16% of the population live under the poverty line of $1.90 per day
UN DEVELOPMENT INDEX*Rank: 102 out of 191
People supported per year800
Thematic focusFood & Nutrition
Climate & Disaster Resilience
Vocational Skills Development
Agriculture and Nutrition
Market Systems Development
Much of Jordan is desert, with little rainfall throughout the year. The extreme heat, prolonged droughts and resulting water shortages place a great burden on the population and the government of Jordan. In the northwest of the country, temperatures of 33 degrees Celsius are measured in the summer; even at night the thermometer falls only slightly below 20 degrees. Rising temperatures demand more and more water, and water scarcity is becoming a potential source of conflict and instability in the region.
The Coronavirus crisis has further aggravated the situation for people in Jordan; hunger grew and, with it, work in precarious jobs. The average unemployment rate is 22.6 percent. Women and young people are particularly affected, with almost one-third of all women and almost half of all young people currently unemployed (29.4 percent and 46.1 percent respectively for those under 25, as of 2022).
As a result of the civil war in neighboring Syria, a large number of Syrian refugees are also currently living in Jordan. According to UNHCR, this number is close to 700,000 (as of 2022). Job opportunities for refugees are limited; the best prospects for them are in agriculture.
Strengthening farmers and connecting them to the market
Helvetas is supporting the economic development of agriculture through various activities in the north of Jordan near the Syrian border. These efforts enable more people to work in agriculture in Jordan and help secure – and even increase – their income, despite the effects of climate change. Sustainable innovations in agriculture and livestock breeding and support in marketing their products are intended to offer smallholder women farmers a long-term perspective.