||Aqaba is located 350km south of the capital of Jordan, Amman, and has a 27km length of coastal line facing the Red Sea. Due to its strategically important location, it has played a role as a logistic hub since ancient times. Aqaba functions as a gateway to the nation and region in terms of trade and logistics, and the base of national economic growth by heavy industry, and also forms the Golden Triangle of tourism along with Petra and Wadi Rum. Besides the border with Saudi Arabia and Israel, with a population of around 200,000, Aqaba is a unique and indispensable city for national stable growth and regional stability.
Since the establishment of the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority (ASEZA) in 2001 under the Aqaba Special Economic Zone (ASEZ) law, ASEZA has been playing a leading role in the planning and development of ASEZ with Aqaba Development Corporation (ADC), which was established in 2004 and playing a role of public assets manager and development agency.
The current master plan, ASEZ 2001-2020 Master Plan (ASEZ Master Plan), which is also known as "the Gensler Master Plan" has been developed in 2000 and approved by the ASEZA Board of Commissioners (BOC) in 2002 and has been serving as the blueprint document for the development of ASEZ. The ASEZ Master Plan sets the long-term strategy of ASEZA for organizing and managing the growth of development in ASEZ. The Master Plan serves as a guide for land use, density, transport, provision of utilities, and protection of environmental, cultural and historical resources.
Since its establishment, ASEZ has attracted more than USD 26 billion of investment in commitment basis for urban and industrial development projects, particularly the tourism sector has been receiving the largest amount. Recently, the area called Wadi Araba and the other area consisting of 6 scattered areas were integrated into the ASEZ area, but the current ASEZ Master Plan has not covered those areas to date.
ASEZ Master Plan was outdated since 2020 and due to the pandemic, the attractive tourism sector has been facing a tough situation for a while.
In addition, with the development of new global agendas such as climate change, SDGs, de-carbonization, and digitalization, it is necessary to review and update the current ASEZ development policy incorporating such challenges.
In this context, ASEZA recognized the urgent need to update the outdated ASEZ Master Plan to direct a future vision and strategies for the ASEZ.
The Overall Goal
Development in ASEZ toward sustainable and competitive city is progressed in accordance with the updated ASEZ Master Plan
The ASEZ Master Plan updated by the project will be approved by the Jordanian Government and will make the Aqaba area an attractive urban development based on the strategies and other aspects of the Urban Development Master Plan.
The ASEZ Master Plan is reviewed and updated.
Current Status Assessment and Analysis of Challenges in ASEZ
Vision and Strategy for ASEZ Development
Land Use Plan and Zoning
Review and Update of Sector and Development Policy
Propose Key Priority Projects and Implementing Strategy
Capacity Development at personal and institutional levels
Dispatch of Experts
Tentative assignment plan of JICA experts
i) Team Leader/ Urban Planning/ Smart City
ii) Spatial Planning/ Land Use
iii) Socio-economic Framework Analysis/ Financing Schemes
iv) Industry Development/ Tourism Promotion
v) Transport and Logistics (Road, Rail, Port, Urban Transport)
vi) Flood Management/ Climate Change
vii) Environmental and Social Consideration/ Strategic Environmental Assessment/ Environment Management
viii) Architecture/ Landscape
(*Titles and components of experts may be slightly changed by Study Team proposals)
Equipment necessary for study team and technical transfer
Deployment of counterparts.
Provision of services, facilities including offices and local expenses for the implementation of the project.