This paper compares selected socioeconomic indicators (e.g. unemployment, Human Development Index, poverty, education, health and environment) in the Southern Region of Jordan with those of its northern and central parts, with the aim of exploring what impact mining has had on local communities. According to the development indicators examined, the South Region of Jordan lags behind, developmentally, the rest of the country as a whole, and that there appears to be a correlation between mining activities in the country and lower-than-average performance, as measured by development indicators. However, this correlation may not be causation and could be due to other factors at work, mining communities may be better off than they would have been otherwise. Before and after mining comparisons of socioeconomic indicators for the locality of Ma'an provide no indication of faster development relative to the rest of the country for the same time period. Mining activities in Jordan appear to largely fail to benefit local communities beyond what is happening in the country as a whole. Policies and rules need to be developed for redistributing part of the Jordanian mining companies' wealth to local communities and in order to offset the local cost of mining.
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