Jordan Agriculture and Fishing Overview

Agriculture and fishing

Lack of water means that only 2.5 percent of Jordan’s surface area is cultivated. As much would be possible to grow but is mainly used as pasture for sheep, goats and camels. Most of the country’s water consumption goes to agriculture today, but the water shortage has led to competition for water between agriculture and households (drinking water).

  • CountryAAH: Comprehensive import regulations of Jordan. Covers import prohibitions and special documentation requirements for a list of prohibited items.

Most crops are dependent on uncertain rainfall and the yield therefore varies greatly with the amount of rainfall that falls.

In the highlands in the northwest, wheat and barley can be grown.

In the Jordandalen, fruits and vegetables are grown using artificial irrigation. At the same time, this means that the Jordan River is severely lost on water, which in turn causes the water level in the Dead Sea to fall by one meter per year, as the river is its natural inflow. In 2013, Jordan signed an agreement with Israel and the Palestinian Authority to build an 18-mile-long pipeline for desalinated water from a plant in Aqaba that could supply all three with drinking water without encroaching on the Jordan River. The pipeline has not yet been built, and would fulfill different needs for the parties: In Israel, which has control over Lake Genesaret and over the natural underground water reservoirs under the occupied West Bank, a pipeline is seen as an investment to maintain a stable regime in neighbor. For Jordan defense and foreign policy, please check recipesinthebox.

Jordan exports vegetables, fruits, nuts and dairy products, but must at the same time import large quantities of other foods, not least meat. The dairy industry mainly covers domestic demand. Jordanian dates are mainly sold to Europe and the United States.

Eggs and chicken are also produced in sufficient quantities, although poor storage and refrigeration options sometimes lead to a shortage of these goods.

Both fishing and forestry have no economic significance in Jordan.


Agriculture’s share of GDP

5.6 percent (2018)

Percentage of land used for agriculture

12.0 percent (2016)



Three princes are dismissed

December 28

King Abdullah dismisses three members of the royal family from military posts. It is about the two brothers Prince Faisal bin Hussein and Prince Ali bin Hussein as well as the cousin Prince Talal bin Muhammad. The decisions are part of a reorganization of the army carried out by the king, which judges believe aims to give Crown Prince Hussein a larger role in Jordan.

Sharp criticism of US decision

December 6

Jordan condemns the US decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and move its embassy there. King Abdullah, the supreme protector of the holy sites of Jerusalem’s ancient city, has also expressed common criticism with the President of Turkey. Both countries have friendly relations with Israel, which according to the outside world keeps the eastern part of Jerusalem occupied.


Solar panels in refugee camps

November 13

In the Zaatari refugee camp, which, according to UNHCR, has 80,000 inhabitants, a solar power plant, set up with German support, is inaugurated. 4,000 solar panels will provide electricity in the desert camp 14 hours a day. Since May, 35,000 Syrian refugees in the Azraq camp have access to renewable energy.


The border with Iraq opens

August 30th

The only Jordanian-Iraq border crossing is reopened. Security situation has been improved by pushing back the Islamic State (IS) terror group, which controlled the border areas.

Impunity for rape is abolished

1 August

A law that allows a rapist to escape punishment if he marries the victim is abolished by Parliament.


Crisis on Temple Mount

23 July

Two Jordanians are shot to death by a security guard at the Israeli embassy in Amman. At the same time, a conflict is underway between Israeli forces and the Palestinian population of Jerusalem, where Jordan is a protective force for Muslim sanctuaries. On Israeli orders, among other things, metal detectors have been set up on the Temple Mount following an attack on Israeli forces. A few days later, Israel takes down the metal arches and promises to investigate the incident in Amman.

Armistice in border area

July 9

Jordan, Russia and the United States have provided a ceasefire in three provinces in southern Syria. According to Jordanian authorities, the country houses 1.4 million refugees from the war in Syria. The UN has registered about 650,000 Syrian refugees.


Approaching refugee roofs

May 22

Jordan says it has reached the limit of how many Syrian refugees can be accommodated. This is in connection with a visit by US new ambassador Nikki Haley, who is studying, among other things, the conditions in the Zaatari camp, which houses 80,000 refugees. The government sets the total number to 1.3 million and the UN has registered more than 680,000 Syrians in Jordan, which has previously housed a large number of Palestinian refugees.


Leftovers are handed over

April 6

50 years after the six-day war, Israel has handed over the remains of three Jordanian soldiers, who were found at a site in Jerusalem where a Jordanian base was formerly located. Jerusalem ruled under Jordanian supremacy until the 1967 war, when Israel occupied the eastern half of Jerusalem. Jordan and Israel made peace in 1994, but Jordan did not recognize Israel’s annexation of East Jerusalem in 1980.


Saudi Arabia is investing

March 28

Saudi Arabia is setting up a $ 3 billion investment fund for Jordan, one of 15 collaborative projects announced in connection with King Salman’s visit to Amman. Among other things, the fund will finance desalination against water shortages, public health projects and a solar power plant.

Sentenced for murder of schoolgirls released

the 12th of March

A soldier who killed seven Israeli schoolgirls who were out on the border in 1997 is released from prison in Irbid. The soldier was sentenced to life, which in Jordan means 20 years. The murders were condemned by the then King Hussein and Jordan paid damages to the girls’ families. The release ends with relatives of the Israeli girls.

15 people sentenced to death are executed

4th of March

At dawn, 15 prisoners are hanged, ten of whom are convicted of terrorist offenses and designated to be part of a group called the “terrorist cell in Irbid”. Between 2006 and 2014, Jordan chose not to carry out the death penalty.


Protests against tax increases

February 24th

Demonstrations are being conducted throughout the country against increases in VAT on, among other things, Internet and mobile use, bread, fuel, tobacco and soft drinks. One reason for the increases is that the IMF believes that reforms are necessary for Jordan to be able to obtain IMF loans. The protesters demand that VAT increases be stopped and that some ministers resign.

Jordan Agriculture and Fishing