Jordan/ 5.1 General legislation  

5.1.2 Division of jurisdiction

“The Ministry of culture is the official body directly responsible for culture and for the drawing up of general policy and culture, implementing it with the cooperation and coordination of other related organisations, in accordance with the country’s laws and regulations.” [1]

Objectives of the Ministry of Culture (MoC) as outlined in Law No. 36, 2006, where the MoC holds cultural guardianship within the following principles:

  • To provide an adequate environment for cultural production
  • To support culture and fine arts, and their appreciation
  • Solidify the relationship between local, regional and international cultural bodies
  • The development and dissemination of Jordanian citizens creativity in different fields
  • Develop an all-encompassing national culture in the Kingdom that underlines its identity as one of Jordanian, Arab, Islamic, and Humanitarian cultures.[2]


The Ministry of Culture maintains a hierarchal system of management for all activities and funds, as well as the administration of cultural centres that are under their control, or under those registered as cooperatives working in the cultural sectors around the country. Additionally, all cultural organisations registered as cooperatives under the Ministry of Culture are closely monitored via reports on yearly activities and budgets that organisations must submit and adhere to, and representatives are assigned by the Ministry to attend board meetings of the organisations throughout the year. Although these organisations are free to source their own funds, any foreign funding received needs to be declared and approved by the Prime Ministers’ Office.[3]

This structure enables the Ministry of Culture to closely monitor all activities within culture, of both its own representative centres in other cities, as well as other cultural organisations registered with it. In 2008 a change was made to the law for non-profit companies (under which many independent spaces are registered in Jordan) that altered the status of existent non-profit companies and automatically changed them to cooperatives registered under the Ministry of Development, who in turn, and depending on the nature of the organisations work, would assign the organisation to its appropriate ministry. It also restricted the future registration of non-profit companies to those working only in the fields of education, health and micro-finance. The law was implemented in 2010, but allowed a grace period for non-profit companies to either change their status to for-profit entities, or present their paperwork for consideration in their respective ministries as cooperative bodies.[4]

[1]Khamis, Lina “Aspects of Cultural Policy in Jordan”, Exeter PhD. 1998

[2]Please note that these were translated from Arabic to English and the Arabic laws are available on

[3]Khamis, Lina “Aspects of Cultural Policy in Jordan”, Exeter PhD. 1998


Chapter published: 04-05-2016