Country Governance

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POGAR > Countries > Country Theme: Anti-Corruption: Jordan
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UN Conventions and Other Agreements

United Nations Convention against Corruption: signed 9 December 2003, ratified 24 February 2005.

United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime: signed 26 November 2002, not ratified.

Jordan is a founding member of the Middle East and North Africa Financial Action Task Force, established on 30 November 2004 as a voluntary regional association to combat money laundering and terrorist financing.

Jordan has a national chapter in formation of Transparency International.

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Government Institutions and Initiatives

Both chambers of the Jordanian parliament approved and promulgated anti-corruption law no. 62/2006 dated November 30, 2006. The new law established the Anti-Corruption Authority that reports directly to the prime minister and enjoys financial and administrative independence. The Authority is run by a council composed of a president and 6 members who are known for their integrity, impartiality and who possess the required experience. The council members, appointed by royal decree upon recommendation of the prime minister, serve as full-time paid employees. The council is responsible to carry out the following tasks: draw and implement effective public anti-corruption policies; uncover all existing forms of corruption, including financial and administrative corruption. The council is also empowered to investigate corruption cases and to take all necessary administrative and legal measures to bring perpetrators to justice. The council is also supposed to create awareness among citizens of the serious and damaging impact of corruption on economic, social and political development. It should coordinate its efforts with other local, regional and international organizations or bodies that fight corruption in order to consolidate anti-corruption methods. The council of the Anti-Corruption Authority has to submit an annual report to the council of ministers and the parliament pertaining to the Authority’s mission and accomplishments. In addition to the newly established Anti-corruption Authority, Jordan possesses two anti-corruption organizations: the Committee to Fight Corruption, defined by Royal Decree of 2000, and the Anti-Corruption Directorate, a branch of the intelligence service. The Committee to Fight Corruption is presided over by the prime minister and enjoys full administrative and financial autonomy.

Jordan had been praised for maintaining a fair standard of transparency in public tenders under a World Bank sponsored privatization effort in 2001. However, major banking scandals in early 2002 tarnished the reputation of the country when dozens of prominent businessmen obtained sizeable loans without collateral. Some even accused the Anti-Corruption Directorate of involvement. A thorough inquiry followed, but few convictions resulted.

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Civil Society Initiatives

Jordan’s “national chapter in formation” of Transparency International has actively campaigned against corruption since holding its first conference in October 2000 “Toward Transparency in Jordan.” Its meetings in Amman have been well publicized and attended by Jordanian business and political elites.

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Public Procurement

The General Supplies Department of the Ministry of Finance regulates all public procurement of other government departments in accordance with Supply Act 32 of 1993. Competitive bidding is usually required, and the rules are publicly accessible although tenders are not always widely publicized to the private sector.

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Anti Money Laundering

Provisional Law No. 83 of 2003 ratified the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism, and the Chamber of Deputies, convened in a special summer session, passed the Law to Combat Money Laundering on May 6, 2007. The law includes a wide variety of offenses, such as drug and human trafficking, arms smuggling, and prostitution, and imposes severe penalties for all involved, not just the perpetrator, of up to five years of prison with hard labor and fines of over $1 million. The law establishes a government body to monitor any violations.

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Corruption Perception Index

Jordan scored 5.0 on Transparency International's Corruption Perception Index 2009. The scale runs from 0 (high corruption) to 10 (no corruption). It is in the 49th place among 180 countries, ahead of Saudi Arabia but behind Bahrain. Jordan had scored 5.1 in 2008, it ranked 62nd among the 180 countries in the world right behind Oman and Bahrain ranking 5th among the 18 Arab Countries. In 2007, Jordan scored 4.7, ranked 53rd, tied with Oman and ahead of Kuwait, among 180 countries. In 2006 Jordan scored 5.3 and was ranked 40th among 163 countries.

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