In this paper the main focus will be on the e-commerce and the factors
that are affecting it in the Middle East and the main two focus countries will
be Jordan And UAE as they are considered to be in the circle of emerging
markets but in a two different levels.
Electronic commerce (EC) or e-commerce systems use the latest tools for automating
and streamlining the flow of transactions between companies and individuals,
for example letters, inquiries, payments and delivery notes. EC systems
transfer information between computer systems and enable users to integrate their
functions, activities and procedures with unprecedented accuracy and speed .EC systems
can be divided into two levels (Sahawneh, 2005).
Online shopping in the Middle East is rapidly evolving and has grown by
1500% over the last decade. With a dynamic young population and with one of the
highest global per capita internet penetration levels the online spending
potential is quickly emerging as one of the highest in the world
Internet World Stats (2017) states that the number of internet users globally
is approximately 3.9 Billion worldwide, and 147 million in the Middle East.
This revolution in E-commerce is proved through the frequency in which the
organizations have taken their opportunities to use the internet for commercial
In developing countries, the growth in use of the internet and the WWW
offers good opportunities for economic growth and development. Bajaj et al.
(2001, p. 363) have suggested that there is a need for developing countries, if
they wish to match growth in the developed world, to “overcome the dangers of
isolation and polarization” by improving their information infrastructure.
Thus, the best promise for growth in developing countries is through the
development of information technology (IT) industries and greater social
applications of IT. At the same time, these IT industries must be compatible with
local conditions and conducive to industrialization .Since most studies in the ?eld
have been conducted in developed countries, there is scope for further research
in the conditions prevalent in developing countries such as Jordan.
E-commerce in Jordan
Two studies have mainly focused on Jordan’s position in e-commerce world
First Sahawneh(2003) even though this study has abided more on the Benefits of
E-commerce in Jordan than the limitations and factors that might affect the process
of e-commerce, Second was the Jordanian Chamber of Commerce when it contended
that e-commerce in Jordan is not fully ready and it at an early stage and needs
more development. Though both studies shows limitations to the existing
e-commerce potential in Jordan, they didn’t shown evidences based on an
academic research to build their studies but as an alternative they suggested
that the main limitations in Jordan’s are language barriers, underdeveloped
legal protection, high costs, unresolved payment solutions, underdeveloped
logistics and limiting government legislation.
In this report the steps of those studies will be emphasized based on other
new reports and articles with a relation to Jordan’s e-commerce.
Jordan is a successful model as a developing country; give the
responsive engagement of the international community. Jordan is considered one of
the major players in the Middle East, especially in economics and politics
(Naser, 1998). This may be due, in part, to its focusing on the application of
e-commerce, and IT. Sahawneh (2003) mentions that B2B e-commerce applications in
Jordan are incorporated mostly into transactions undertaken between a few
Jordanian institutions with non-Jordanian partners
Jordan was ranked as 54th out of 68 countries in its
information technology and information system readiness rankings in The
Economist Intelligence Unit (2010) reports. And this can be noticed as an
indicator that organizations in Jordan might or mostly will meet the requirements
and conditions to conduct e-commerce
systems, although in this paper our focus will demonstrate the obstacles that face
those organizations some of those factors are internal such as strategy
experiences and perceptions of the origination’s management, while pointing on
some external factors such as readiness
of local and global trading partners to adapt e-commerce systems and the
external pressure by local and global trading partners who adopt e-commerce systems,
including the infrastructure, network availability and online transactions.
There are five primary economic sectors in Jordan: industrial, services, trade,
agriculture and construction
Jordan is being highly driven and motivated towards upgrading its infrastructure
in order to accelerate full readiness for e-commerce and its systems adaption, identifying
all of the benefits of e-commerce and its applications especially on the
e-government approach. AL-Jaghoub and westrup(2003) stated that the Jordanian
methodologies toward the adaption and development of Information and
communication technologies segment as a part of competitiveness, which makes it
put its own signature on the highly globalized world, by applying the latest
technologies to communication services and other governmental and
non-governmental sectors such as Internet service providers (Orange ,Zain ,Umniah),
national information center, E-Banking and e-government, this leaded to a
boosted profile of the Jordanian companies in e-commerce
Factors affecting Jordan’s e-commerce
In recent years most of small to big sized companies especially banks in
Jordan are relying on e-commerce on its daily processes and transactions
completion, this can be considered as a part and result of the IT revelation that
affects both sides developed and developing counties around the world, Jordan
is being highly affected by this revolution and trying its best to get all the
advantages possibly available, yet there is a gap that appears between Jordan
and developed countries in the adaption of this revolution in all types of
firms not only on a specified level or sector ,this gap is due to many factors
that will be mentioned below in this report.
Those factors were described in (Humphyeys, Mclvor and Huang, 2003) as
the issues related to acquiring appropriate technologies to meet business requirements.
These factors could prohibit firm’s especially smaller businesses from adopting
e-commerce such as online banking. Indeed, a number of studies indicated that
technical issues especially those related to information security and
information technology risks were restraining the adoption of e-commerce (Sulaiman,
2000; Lawson et al., 2013). These factors include positive impact on e-commerce
specifically on security and privacy of users, as users of e-commerce take
security and privacy very seriously and as the most important and crucial
things to be available in order to make their e-commerce decisions. (Selz and
Schubert, 1997). G. Lohse and P. Spiller (1998) looked at it in two different
ways: on one hand, protection of transactional details of customers, on the
other – privacy of personal information of the respondents.