With a GDP of 33.68 billion USD (in 2013), Jordan's economy is strong, and its recent growth has outpaced many of its neighboring countries. This is largely thanks to an influx of construction companies keen to use the country as a site for their offices while work in neighboring Iraq is ongoing. Iraq's urgent need for an improved infrastructure means that engineering jobs are in abundance, and most expats working in Jordan are employed by such a company. European and Americans represent the majority of Amman's expat working population.
Jordan's infrastructure ranked 71st by the World Economic Forum's Index of Economic Competitiveness in 2015. In terms of the country's most prolific sectors, as of 2013, industry and manufacturing accounted for an estimated 29.9% of the GDP, compared to a service sector that made up 67% of the country’s GDP. While the English teaching market is not overly big in Jordan, there are some opportunities for those wishing to explore the country while working.
The country's future looks bright, with a solid economic performance propelled by liberal economic policies. It was these policies that allowed Jordan to escape serious damage from the financial crisis. Classed as an emerging market, and with an annual economic growth rate of around 4%, Jordan is ideally suited a expats searching for a modern, increasingly Westernized country offering the tax perks with which Arab kingdoms are now synonymous .
There is a high demand for expatriate workers in Jordan, and those with engineering qualifications will be particularly suited to Western Asia's employment gem. The internet, as with most things these days, can help enormously with your job search. There are a number of sites that deal specifically with expat jobs in Jordan. Monster Gulf, Bayt, and Naukri are just some of the Gulf-focused web resources available. More often than not, expats coming to Jordan will have employment arranged before arriving, and if this is the case, it is important to ensure that you have all the documents needed to prove it.
Expats working in Jordan will typically not be subject to income taxes in their home country for the money they earn abroad. In addition, if they are working for a foreign company, they may even be able to avoid paying tax altogether. Clarification on matters like this can be obtained from the tax office.
For those who must pay tax in Jordan, rates range from 7% to 14%, depending on the salary earned. The Jordanians operate a PAYE system. That means that, if tax is taken, it is deducted automatically from the salary, as are social security contributions. Those who work for themselves will have to file their own taxes, and can do so at the Income Tax and Sales Tax Department.
Jordan is an interesting destination for expats, with its Western ways making for a relative smooth transition to life in the Gulf. Its impressive monuments have long drawn tourists from all over the world. Jordan has also never been a more attractive investment opportunity, and with investment comes improved quality of life and a better infrastructure — certainly worth considering if you are an expatriate.