Building Economic Sustainability through Tourism Project

BEST Overview

Building Economic Sustainability through Tourism (BEST) 


Jordan's tourism sector holds great potential for contributing to significant economic growth and creating jobs within all parts of the country. BEST will build on the work accomplished by the Jordan Economic Growth through Sustainable Tourism project and other USAID tourism projects over the past decade to help Jordan address existing challenges and achieve its tourism capabilities.

This five-year, $36 million project seeks to support Jordan's transformation into a globally competitive tourism destination. The project will work closely with government, non-government and private sector tourism stakeholders to strengthen the country's tourism facilities and services, improve the management and promotion of tourism sites, boost marketing efforts and encourage tourism to secondary sites. It also seeks to address the dearth of women working in tourism and promote the employment of youth in this sector, where demand for skilled workers is high.

BEST will focus its work on the following core areas to achieve its goals:

1. Creating a business enabling environment:The USAID tourism project will support governmental and private sector initiatives designed to put in place immediate and longer term policy reforms to promote tourism investment and improve the tourism experiences and sites in Jordan.

2. Tourism asset development:Jordan's cultural and natural attractions lie at the core of its tourism appeal, and efforts will be made to develop these precious sites as needed and improve services at the sites and surrounding areas as well as at museums. The tourism product will be diversified as the project works closely with public and community support to enhance existing tourism products and create new ones, including trails and local activities.

3. Destination marketing:Strengthening destination marketing is of extreme importance to rebounding arrivals and achieving future growth. By working with Jordan Tourism Board and partners, strategic communication and marketing campaigns will be enabled and various sales channels in international markets will be utilized to attract more visitors and target new, niche and lucrative markets.

4. Industry development and destination excellence:Developing tourism assets will be achieved by developing tourism sites and experiences underpinned by professionalism and hospitality and by enhancing the quality and appeal of tourism and hospitality establishments and services, and upgrading tourism education and training at the university and collegiate level in Jordan.

5. Improved access to finance: BEST will work to increase access to finance for tourism enterprises and entrepreneurs and strengthen their ability to access capital for tourism ventures. This will be achieved by working to improve lenders’ willingness to provide tourism loans and enhancing businesses’ ability to prepare effective loan applications.

6. Tourism Partnership Fund:The Tourism Partnership Fund (TPF) will provide grants and fund technical assistance to counterparts and beneficiaries for product and market development, tourism industry competitiveness, public-private partnerships and job creation. Regional presence will be established through coordinators covering activities across regions to promote community development and outreach.

It is anticipated that these efforts will unify and strengthen Jordan's tourism sector and achieve the following key results:

  • Increase of tourism receipts by 15%
  • Increase of female participation in the tourism workforce by 15%
  • Bring hundreds of thousands visitors to secondary sites annually
  • Creation of 25,000 direct jobs in the tourism sector
  • Reduce seasonal fluctuations by 30%
  • Increase tourist arrivals by 20%
  • Increase domestic tourism by 30%

This nationwide tourism transformation will ultimately help establish Jordan as a globally competitive destination.