This tag is associated with 50 posts

In Gaza, Hamas rule has not turned out as many expected

The article analyses the current situation in Gaza, after more than 5 years of Hamas administration. Palestinians who are interviewed say that, when they elected Hamas 5 years ago, they expected more of the party. They are disappointed that the economic situation only seem to have gotten worse, and that Hamas officials mainly work for their own … Continue reading

Opinion: Egypt-Israel Gas Crisis: publicity stunt or smoke screen?

Ayman Qenawi says the decision by the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation and Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company to suspend the sale of natural gas to Israel because of a “business dispute” would  not have been possible without “a crystal-clear go-ahead from the ruling Supreme Council of Armed Forces (SCAF).” But the author says the reasons behind this … Continue reading

Opinion: Termination of Israeli-Egyptian natural gas agreement serves dangerous precedent

Following the announcement by the CEO of the Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company of the termination of the agreement with Israel, after 14 attacks against the pipeline since the revolution, Zvi Bar’el explores the causes behind the decision. As the agreement symbolizes for many the corruption of the Mubarak regime, pressure from the street may … Continue reading

Palestinian Authority, battling debt crisis, raises taxes

The Palestinian Authority has approuved a plan to rise income tax to 20% in order to tackle its debt problem. The Palestinian Authority depends heavily on foreign aid by the United States, the European Union and other Arab states to pay the salaries of their public sector workers. In response to President Mahmoud Abbas quest … Continue reading

IMF: If Arabs and Haredim worked, GDP would grow by 15%

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) reported that while Israeli economy was well prepared for the worldwide recession, all is not well. In the population groups of Haredi men and Arab women, respectably, only 40% and 20% work and typically earn less than their contemporaries of the same jobs, decreasing potential economic growth, reducing GDP growth. … Continue reading

Obama proposes $1.3 billion military aid for Egypt in 2013 despite ongoing NGOs row

U.S. president Barack Obama proposed to renew the $1.3 billion in military aid to Egypt for 2013, despite the recent crackdown on illegally funded american NGO’s in the country. However, it has to be accepted by the majority in congress where a few have said the U.S. should completely cut off aid to Egypt if … Continue reading

Israel’s general strike called off as State, unions reach deal

On Sunday, the fifth day of the general strike that has paralyzed Israel’s public sector, the Histadrut labor federation and the Finance Ministry have reached an agreement to end the strike. The strike has so far resulted in large piles of garbage along the streets, while it has not been collected since Wednesday. The agreement … Continue reading

Palestinian economy could be ‘double’ without Israeli occupation

Jad Isaac, director of the Applied Research Institute in Jerusalem, said on a UN meeting in Cairo that Israel’s occupation of Palestine is the main impediment to any prospects for a sustainable Palestinian economy. The total measured cost of the Israeli occupation is estimated to be at 84 percent of Palestinian GDP. The majority of financial … Continue reading

Israeli Negotiators Report Progress in Strike Talks

On Thursday, a resolution for the two-day-old general strike in Israel came closer. The main focus of the strike was better working conditions for the lower-paid contract workers in the public sector. Ports, government offices and other public institutes have not been operating. Officials expect the agreement to state that a small portion of the … Continue reading

Israeli workers open general strike, disrupting airport and economy

Israel’s main labor union declared a strike on Wednesday that affected banks, hospitals, trains, the stock exchange and caused delays at Ben Gurion Airport. The strike was initiated because the union and the Israeli government could not reach an agreement over the conditions for workers employed through labor contractors. Head of the labor union Ofer Eini … Continue reading

EU to keep paying new Hamas-linked government

Despite Hamas being designated a terrorist group by the European Union, Palestinian authorities will keep on receiving money from Europe despite the Fatah-Hamas unity government taking shape following the Doha declaration. “The EU looks forward to continuing its support, including through direct financial assistance, for a new Palestinian government that should uphold the principle of non-violence,” … Continue reading

PA starts budget crisis talks

The Palestinian Authority’s Prime Minister Salem Fayyad met on February 6th with union leaders and employers to discuss measures to decrease their growing debt crisis. The austerity measures approved in January by the PA produced public outcry and protest due to growing fears that any rise in taxation will drive away investments and further stifle … Continue reading

Egypt Fumes Over Israel’s Energy Plans

In an attempt to increase Israeli self-sufficiency and strengthen economic bonds with Europe, Israel has announced plans for the construction of an Ashdod power plant which will be linked to European markets through Cyprus. Egypt has also been seeking this sort of opportunity to create an infrastructural tie to Europe. As a result, Egyptian media … Continue reading

Israel plans Red Sea-Mediterranean rail link to manage Suez overflow

Israel has announced a plan for a 350 km railway linking Eilat on the Red Sea with Ashdod on the Mediterranean sea. The railway could be an alternative to the Suez Canal, especially when that route will not be able to cope with the increasing volume of trade. Israeli officials deny the suggestion that the plan is … Continue reading

Palestinians Nix Plans for Income Taxes

Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad has suspended his plan to start collecting income taxes, after widespread protests erupted across the West Bank over the plan. The income was meant to make the Palestinian Authority less dependable on foreign aid. Since the Palestinian bid to win statehood recognition from the UN, the PA has received less … Continue reading

Opinion: “The People Are Suffocating”: West Bank Economy Struggles Under Pressure From U.S. Congress

A report from the streets of Ramallah by Karl Vick. Palestinians say they are suffering from a loss in income, mainly caused by the still delayed $147 million on promised aid from the US. Some Republican members in the House of Representatives seem to punish the moderate Palestinian Authority for their application for membership of … Continue reading

The badly kept secret of Israel’s trade throughout the Muslim world

A poorly kept secret has been quietly breaking legal and customary norms throughout the Middle East’s economy. Israeli products are everywhere, albeit disguised. In one instance, an Israeli business knowingly sold internet surveillance and monitoring equipment to Iran, which is prohibited under Israeli sanctions, and shipped their product to Denmark, where it underwent repackaging to hide its … Continue reading

Syrians cope with profound economic crisis as regime tries to crush revolt

As the Assad regime continues to violently repress the 10-month old uprising, it is struggling to contain the damage done to the Syrian economy. In line with the government’s public statements throughout, the regime is blaming terrorists and foreign conspiracies for the severe economic woes. The economic devastation has penetrated the lives of multiple segments … Continue reading

EU calls Iran’s bluff on military threats and sets oil embargo for July

Foreign minister from European Union member states have agreed to set an embargo on Iranian oil starting in six months time. To force the Iranian regime to stop its alleged nuclear weapons program, the EU will stop importing oil and petroleum products from the Islamic Republic starting July 1. The time lag is meant to … Continue reading

Palestinian premier under pressure to rescind tax hike meant to end reliance on foreign aid

In the West Bank, businessmen have been pushing for Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad to annul the income tax increase meant to make Palestinians less dependant of foreign aid for the government’s daily operations. Fayyad said that in 2011, the government received 25% less than it needed from foreign aid. He also argued that the … Continue reading


Debate: Is there a rift between the Prime Minster and the security establishment, and how might it affect his chances of re-election?

Interview: Dr. Einat Wilf, Israeli MP, Chair of the ‘Independence’ faction

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