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Bank project offers Palestinian women independence

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — On July 5, the Ramallah-based National Bank (TNB) launched its latest version of Hayati (My Life), a program that targets women. The privately owned bank first introduced the program in 2015, focusing on savings accounts and offering a limited number of 0% interest loans for modest amounts. …

PA faces backlash after slashing Gaza salaries

RAMALLAH, West Bank — Tens of thousands of protesters took to the streets recently to decry a Palestinian Authority (PA) decision to slash its employees’ salaries in the Gaza Strip by 30-50%. The move is prompting a meeting that could change the relationship between PA rival political parties Hamas and Fatah — for better or …

PA seeks to implement new mechanism to manage Arab, international funds

AMMAN (Ma’an) — Palestinian National Economy Minister Abir Odeh addressed the Arab League’s Economic and Social Council on Sunday, urging Arab and international institutions to provide financial support for Palestinians in occupied East Jerusalem, at a ministerial meeting held in preparation for the upcoming annual Arab League Summit in Amman …

Will new regulations deal a blow to Palestine’s local tobacco industry?

RAMALLAH, West Bank — The Palestinian government ratified a plan Feb. 28 to regulate the tobacco sector in an attempt to improve the quality of locally grown tobacco, restructure prices, protect farmers and local companies, fight tax evasion and cigarette smuggling and increase government revenue. In the northern West Bank, especially in the Jenin …

When will Gaza gas field start operating?

RAMALLAH, West Bank — Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah told the local Donia al-Watan website March 7 that the consensus government is discussing with developing companies the extraction of natural gas off the coast of the Gaza Strip. However, the prospects for this remain hindered by security and political obstacles. On Feb. …

محادثات فلسطينيّة مع شركة “شلّ” لتطوير حقل غزّة للغاز الطبيعيّ

رام الله، الضفّة الغربيّة – كشف رئيس الوزراء الفلسطيني رامي الحمد الله في لقاء صحفي مع موقع دنيا الوطن المحلي في 7 آذار/مارس، أن حكومة التوافق تجري مفاوضات مع الشركات المطورة لاستخراج الغاز الطبيعي من سواحل غزة (شركة شل)، والتي لا تزال عالقة لدواعٍ أمنية وسياسية لم يذكرها، وهو ما …

What EU shift in financial support policy means for Gaza

It is no secret that the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) financial crisis is mounting with declining foreign support. This has prompted Mohammad Shtayyeh, a member of Fatah’s Central Committee and former minister of public works and housing, to confirm Feb. 13 that donors’ funding is decreasing and the PA’s financial crisis is ongoing. …

Quarrying leaves West Bank villagers on shaky ground

  (Kur village-Tulkarem- photo credit: Mahmoud Dar Awwad, 2 May 2014- Tejwal Safar to Kur). RAMALLAH, West Bank — The historic village of Kur, southeast of the city of Tulkarm, is known for its architectural heritage, including its domed buildings and castles, the oldest of which dates to the Mamluk era (1260-1516), while others were built by the Ottomans …

Gaza’s exchange shops come under scrutiny

A Palestinian man changes money at a currency exchange bureau in Gaza City, Gaza, Jan. 30, 2006.  (photo by MAHMUD HAMS/AFP/Getty Images) GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — On Oct. 26, the Palestinian Ministry of National Economy started the process of establishing an oversight department aimed at overseeing the work of currency exchange …

Can Palestinian Authority cope with decline of international aid?

A Palestinian teacher takes part in a protest demanding better pay and conditions, Ramallah, West Bank, March 7, 2016.  (photo by REUTERS/Mohamad Torokman) RAMALLAH, West Bank — By the end of August, international financial aid to the Palestinian government registered an unprecedented decline, Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah said during an …