Sustainable tourism in Jordan
In December 2015, the EBRD approved a senior loan to support the development and operation of the first phase of the Ayla Village, part of the Ayla Oasis regeneration project, which is located in Aqaba on the border between Jordan and Israel.
The project has begun to support the development of Aqaba into a leading tourist destination, with world heritage sites Petra and Wadi Rum only two hours away.
The infrastructure of the hospitality, commercial and residential buildings at Ayla has been designed to use renewable energy produced on site. The EBRD’s financing will contribute to the use of climate resilience solutions that will lead to significant energy and water savings. In addition it will contribute to reducing carbon emissions – particularly important given Jordan is one of the most water-scarce countries in the world and imports about 95 per cent of its energy.
The project is expected to create over 3,000 jobs across all facilities in the village. Training and recruitment have already begun in partnership with local universities/colleges.
In partnership with UNWTO and the Jordanian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, the EBRD held an inclusive tourism conference in Petra, Jordan, in October 2016, which culminated in the Petra Declaration.