Jordanian Prime Minister calls for increased international assistance in dealing with Syrian Crisis

The Syrian refugee crisis has stretched public finances and strained the capacity of Jordan's civil services to cope, the Jordanian Prime Minister told delegates to the ILC on Monday. Abdullah Ensour also outlined the serious impact the crisis has had on the Jordanian labour market.

Audio | 09 June 2014
Abdullah Ensour, speaking at the International Labour Conference in Geneva told delegates of the extreme pressure Jordanian civil services have felt in dealing with Syrian refugees and migrants:

"Hosting in excess of 1.3 million Syrians, including about 600 000 registered refugees has increased pressure on our existing infrastructure and basic service provision.  This is worsened already by stretched public finances and called for urgent public investments in host communities.  All this has added pressure on the services the country provides to its citizens. This pressure has led the government and the state to invest sufficiently to welcome and receive that high a number of refugees especially in the fields of education and health and energy and transportation. Maybe the greatest impact that can be evaluated is the impact that the informal labour market was subjected to. And this is the reason why I am here, before you presenting my speech.  So it is difficult for any party to understand and fathom the impact of the Syrian crisis on my country and the labour market, in view of the great number of refugees who have entered into the labour mark and created a lot of pressure. It also led to a decrease in wages as many accept any wage in order to obtain the possibility of employment."

Mr Ensour went on to call for more support from the international community:

“We wish that the related international community institutions do take their part in enabling Jordan to play such a humanitarian role through providing all forms of support and assistance to Jordan so that we can provide Syrian refugees with basic services, while maintaining the same level of service to Jordanian Citizens. “

The Prime Minister of Jordan, His Excellency Mr Abdullah Ensour, speaking at the 103rd International Labour Conference in Geneva.

Reporting for ILO radio, this is Pete Forster.