Jerusalem, (Business News Report)|| The trade movement between Palestine and Israel has surged as the number of Palestinian workers working in Israel increased, a new UNSCO report said.
The report also stated that the export of goods from the West Bank and Gaza Strip is higher than it has been in many years, and these exports are heading to Israel.
“Some trends point to increasing activity and integration between the Israeli and Palestinian economies, particularly with respect to expanded access to the Israeli labor market,” the report said.
The number of workers crossing from the West Bank into Israel has risen to 153,000, and about 20,000 entry permits have been approved for Palestinians in Gaza to enter Israel for work or trade, the report said.
It attributed this increase to some recent Israeli decisions to make some improvements in access and trade movement.
“Initiatives like this […] will hopefully help to improve Palestinian livelihoods and ease tensions in
the short term,” the report said.
The report emphasized the urgent need to adopt a more strategic approach to address the economic and financial crisis facing the Palestinian Authority.
The UNSCO urged the need for a coordinated and integrated response to resolve this precarious situation.
The report warned against an uncoordinated approach to addressing the current political, economic and security challenges in the occupied Palestinian territory which only risks perpetuating an ongoing cycle of crisis management.
On the other hand, the report pointed out that the area of Palestinian economic activity in the West Bank, especially in Area C (constituting 60% of the area of the West Bank), does not allow the required Palestinian economic growth.
Israeli restrictions on movement and land use, ongoing settlement activity and settlement expansion, and the lack of Israeli building permits, which are almost impossible for Palestinians to obtain, confirm this negative development, it said.
The report noted that improving Palestinian access to Area C and allowing Palestinians to meet their development needs would have a positive impact on Palestinian economic development. The sectors that benefit the most are agriculture, minerals, mining, construction, tourism and telecommunications.