His Majesty King Abdullah during his visit to Shobak calling for benefiting from the National Self-employment Programme Inhad to start SMEs

His Majesty King Abdullah on Tuesday urged capitalising on the potential of Shobak District in tourism, agriculture, and local production, which would empower the local community and create job opportunities.
During a visit to the district and a meeting with local community representatives, King Abdullah called for diversifying the tourism product by offering adventure tourism and linking Shobak with the golden triangle of Aqaba, Wadi Rum, and Petra to enrich tourists experience and benefit the local community.
His Majesty directed the concerned stakeholders to devise an action plan for tourism projects in Shobak, stressing the need to enhance its infrastructure to better attract visitors.
Promotion of Shobaks attractions should target domestic tourists and international visitors, the King said, calling for benefiting from the National Self-employment Programme Inhad to start small enterprises in the tourism sector that encourage visitors to stay longer.
Calling for turning local community suggestions into investments on the ground, His Majesty said follow-up is key to ensure successful implementation.
The King directed the government to enable local farmers to access water resources, stressing the need to develop the agricultural sector and support light industries that serve the local community.
Speaking at the meeting, Tourism Minister Majd Shweikeh said the ministry is working to turn Shobak into a key attraction for hiking and adventure tourism by enhancing the infrastructure, diversifying the tourism product, and training local communities.
King Abdullah II Fund for Development Director Saeb Al Hasan provided a briefing on the role of the funds Jordanian Heritage Revival Company in developing the tourism product by re-enacting historical eras from Jordans heritage in Shobak, Petra, Wadi Rum, and Umm Qais.
Also during the meeting, local community representatives thanked His Majesty for meeting with them and listening to their concerns, commending the Kings directives to the government on countering coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
Calling for attracting more investments in agriculture, tourism, industry, and energy to create job opportunities, they also stressed the importance of putting Shobak on the tourism map.
Moreover, they commended His Majestys position in defence of the Palestinian cause and in safeguarding Islamic and Christian holy sites in Jerusalem, as well as his efforts to serve Arab and Islamic causes, noting Jordans rejection of any Israeli unilateral measure to annex West Bank lands.
During the visit to Shobak, the King viewed homemade products by local women displayed at Montreal Hotel, an affiliate of the Cooperative Tourist Society of the Shobak Villages Union.
His Majesty commended the womens role in supporting tourism in the district, directing the government to empower women in Shobak through opportunities to market their products.
The King also toured the Shobak Castle visitor centre and was briefed on efforts to restore and conserve the castle.
Royal Hashemite Court Chief Yousef Issawi, Adviser to His Majesty for Communication and Coordination Bisher Khasawneh, Adviser to His Majesty for Policies and Media Kemal Al Nasser, and the governor of Maan accompanied His Majesty on the visit.