Jordan Energy Goals Remain Hostage To Geography

Amman is seeing results from its push toward renewables and gas. But the country’s energy future remains tied to developments abroad—particularly Israel’s Leviathan.

Like the region’s other Arab monarchies, energy is a key concern in Jordan, albeit for very different reasons. Boasting next to zero oil and gas resources, the Hashemite kingdom relies on costly imports for 95% of its energy consumption—a further burden on the country’s stagnant economy.

Energy imports cost Jordan $3.42bn (JD 2.45bn) in 2017 up 26% from 2016, and with spending on oil imports alone up 43% for the first eight months of 2018, MEES estimates total spending on energy imports will easily exceed $5bn by the end of the year—equal to a whopping 12% of GDP.

Given that Jordan subsidizes both electricity and transport fuels, the cash-strapped government is unable to recover these costs. Even minor increases in tariffs are heavily scrutinized, leading to public demonstrations. Political stability thus comes at the cost of taking on more debt—a key dynamic troubling Jordanian policymakers. (CONTINUED - 1801 WORDS)


chart Jordan Primary Energy Mix (Mn Toe/Y)*
chart Jordan Installed Power Capacity (GW, End Yr): Renewables Share To Top 20% By 2020; Oil Shale Plant Provides Key Conventional Boost