PA’s dependency on external actors, neo liberal policies and corruption (part II)


As we have seen in the first article (The Oslo predicament and the PA’s failure, collaboration and repression…https://cafethawrarevolution.wordpress.com/2012/07/13/the-oslo-predicament-and-the-pas-failure-collaboration-and-repression/) the Oslo Agreement and Paris Protocol were designed in order to maintain the Palestinian economy just as before fully incorporated into and dependent upon the Israeli economy. In 2002 nearly a decade after the conclusion of the agreements between the PLO and the Israeli State, around 75% of all imports to the OPT were issued from Israel and 95% of all OPT’s exports were directed to Israel[1]. Israel continued to retain its control over all external frontiers, especially in the West Bank, while the Israeli grip on the Gaza strip has been undermined by the development of the tunnel business these past years as we will see later in the text, but it nevertheless in general and until nowadays prevented the Palestinian economy to engage in significant trade relations with other countries. 

In 2002, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip were strongly dependent on imported products, with overall imports reaching around 80% of the GDP[2]. Despite the massive amounts of development financial assistance spilled into the West Bank and the Gaza Strip since 1993, the productive capacity of the Palestinian economy — measured by examining the agricultural and manufacturing sectors — is half that of 1994, and equals for no more than 12% of employment.[3] While the World Bank and Palestinian Authority(PA) crowed the 8% increase in GDP, real per capita income is still 8.4% lower than what it was in 1999, indicating that the GDP growth is not reflective of income growth for the average Palestinian[4]. During the period 1999-2007, Palestinian GDP per capita actually decreased by approximately two-thirds and personal savings were destroyed as a consequence of Israeli attacks on Palestinian areas.  These were the worst levels of poverty ever witnessed at the time: around three-quarters of households in Gaza and well over half in the West Bank now live in poverty[5].

The extreme weakness in domestic production and the acute dependency on imports, led to situation where the economic power of the Palestinian capitalist class resided in its comprador nature and not from local industry or production[6]. Its benefits were issued from the exclusive import rights on Israeli products, and supremacy over big monopolies that were given to those loyally attached to the President Arafat.  This bourgeoisie has since 1993 merged with segments of the PA bureaucracy and make up an important pillar of the PA’s power[7].

The PA has owed it continual subsistence to its wholly dependence, politically and economically, on Israel, the USA and European countries since the start of the Oslo process. As a matter of fact, between 1995 and 2000, 60% of the total PA income originated from indirect taxes acquired by the Israeli State on products imported from overseas and intended to the OPT[8]. This process is a direct result of the 1995 Paris protocol economic agreement between the PA and Israel, which edicts that the Israeli State collects the money from these indirect taxes as explained in the previous sentence and then transfers it to the PA each month. The Israeli State can suspend without notification and justification to the PA its payments of the money collected as it had done at numerous times since 2000 and create therefore a considerable fiscal crisis in the finance of the PA. In 2011 only, the Israeli State delayed the transfer of clearance revenues by about three weeks in May, following the reconciliation agreement between the PA and Hamas, and again in November, after the PA‘s application for membership at the UN.

The other significant source of PA revenue is external expenditure from the USA, European countries and Arab regimes, representing as much as 75% of the PA salary budget in 2001[9]. Foreign donors have in addition contributed to emergency programs, including food relief, employment creation schemes and reconstruction of destroyed infrastructure. In the beginning of the 2000s, the OPT trade deficit was 45-50% of the GDP and was mainly covered by foreign financial assistance[10].  These indicators have remained to a large extent the same regarding the PA until nowadays.

In the first period between 1994 and 1999, the development approach of the PA incorporated targets such as employment generation, building infrastructure, rural development and promoting exports[11]. This program was the result of a consultation process with the private sector and NGOs. Many studies and Palestinians actually criticized the plan because it was not made through discussions with various sectors of the society and not based on assessment of the real needs of the Palestinian society[12]. The Palestinian Development Plan witnessed many shortfalls and appeared merely a list of projects aimed to collect financial assistance from the donor community, and not development plan with long term outlook[13].

The PA introduced legislation to stimulate investment and develop connections with the private sector to confer this latter the leading role in the economy. The Investment Promotion Laws in 1995 and 1998 is an example of these policies, which conceded tax exemptions for investments projects on the basis of the volume of capital invested and amount of workers employed[14]. The dialogue between the private and public sectors can be represented by the May 2000 National Economic Dialogue Conference, which suggested many recommendations for ameliorating the function of the private sector in the Palestinian economy, improving PA competency, strengthening the principles of accountability and transparency[15].

In the same time, the PA persisted in establishing trade monopolies over some basics and essential goods and commodities through PA controlled companies dominated by individuals in the upper echelons of the PA bureaucracy working in collaboration with Israeli suppliers[16]. These monopolistic practices have restrained free competition in the OPT economy, undermined the private sector, particularly small companies, and led to the rise in prices of essential commodities. For example, between the summer of 1995 and the summer of 1996, the price of six kilogram sack of flour increase from NIS 45 to NIS 120 and was directly imputed to the flour monopoly[17]. The PA and personalities close to it gained hundreds of millions of dollars yearly from these monopolies[18]. These incomes actually also represent a transfer of revenue from poorer groups to a new political class with significant economic power such as the PA sponsored monopoly the Palestinian Telecommunication Company that does not garner telephone bills from governmental institutions and balances for this loss by overpricing private consumers[19].

Following internal and external constrains, the PA engaged in a series of measures to decrease the number of monopolies and privatization of various sections of its society, as public holdings in telecommunications were sold to private investors early on under Yasir Arafat’s PA. These policies also had the objective to attenuate rents drew out by individuals in the PA[20]. In addition, most remaining public assets, enterprises it owns or in which it holds shares, as well as revenue streams from public franchises, have since been consolidated in the Palestinian Investment Fund (PIF) following IMF-designed budget and fiscal transparency reforms of 2003[21]. The PIF is nevertheless today accused of being a tool of Abbas and his cronies, as M. Abbas has reportedly installed his own allies as board members[22].

The PA has in the meantime, especially since the arrival of the Prime Minister Salam Fayyad, encouraged and implemented neo liberal policies in the OPT under its control. Neo liberal strategies have actually been an important feature of the PA statehood plan which should give birth to a Palestinian State in September 2011.

In 2008, the PA launched the Palestinian Reform and Development Plan (PRDP), which affected importantly the economy of the West Bank. This plan was elaborated in close coordination with establishments known for their neo liberal economic vision, including the World Bank and the British Department for International Development (DFID)[23]. This PA led project incorporated the essential principles of neoliberalism, in other words foster a private sector driven economic strategy in which the objective is to draw in foreign investment and decrease public spending to a minimum.  The PRDP for example recommends the undertaking of a series of fiscal reforms in order to strengthen an “enabling environment for the private sector” as the “engine of sustainable economic growth[24].

These neo liberal policies and appeal to privatization have actually been very often presented as being part of the practice of good governance, which has been elevated “to the status of a national goal in and of itself” by the PA[25]. “An extensive program of legal, regulatory and administrative reform . . . as part of the effort to achieve greater economic self-reliance,” is required, which means that the state’s involvement in the economy must be limited to investing in public infrastructure, establishing market-friendly institutions, and intervening when markets cease to work efficiently[26]. In other words, the PA’s outlook of the public sector’s role in the economy is based on the sort of export-led development strategy and “sound” macroeconomic policy whose theoretical principles and hypothesizes have been challenged ever since the model was enacted and effectively discredited with the global financial crisis of these past years[27].

Few months before, in December 2007, a conference in Paris gathering more than 90 international officials from different countries and donor organizations pledged their support to the PA government led by the Prime Minister Salam Fayyad. The participants at the conference, which included various EU member states, European commission, the IMF, and the Israeli government, promised over US$7.7 billion in financial support to the PA[28].

The primary reason for this conference, the biggest of this kind since 1996, was made to collect mass financial aid for the future and new PA economic strategy named the Palestinian Reform and Development Plan for 2008-2010 (PRDP). This plan, based upon a detailed series of suggestions developed by the World Bank and various financial institutions including the IMF and DFID, has been implemented in areas in the West Bank where the PA has effective control.

Palestinian popular organizations have criticized the over influence of neo liberal financial institutions in the policies of the PA and in the PRDP accusing them of being  “a de facto ‘shadow government’ in the West Bank, dictating the development programme of the Salam Fayyad government[29].

The program of the PRDP can be resumed by 3 main elements:

–          the commitment to cut 21% of jobs in the public sector workforce by 2010, or in other words the layoff of approximately 40 000 people.

–          the pledge of the PA not to raise any public sector wages between 2008 and 2011, while the Palestinians in the OPT are affected by high level of inflation, reaching as much as 11% in 2008, and rapidly increasing food and energy prices.

–          The provision by citizens of “certificate of payment” of utility bills in order to obtain any municipal or government services. This decision would have a significant consequence on the poor and the most vulnerable sections of the society, as the the subsidization of electricity and water bills was a key instrument of survival for millions of people in a context of raising poverty rates. Citizens with unpaid debts would be denied to apply for various services, while public sector workers would have utility debts cut from their wages[30]. This last element emphasized once again the way the PA is an institution serving their colonial occupier. The OPT have actually no authority over fundamental services including water, electricity (except the Gaza strip in small proportion) and telephone access, because of the Israeli occupation system. All these utilities are delivered by Israeli companies through Palestinian mediators and the bill a customer receives is issued from an Israeli company.   The PA is therefore the debt collector for Israeli companies through this PRDP “certificate of payments” and targets the poorest sections of the society in order to maintain the structures of occupation[31].

All the donors financial assistance including the $7.7 billion pledged by the international Community and financial institutions were actually subject to the implementation of these particular decisions and the PRDP in general[32]. The establishment of the new bank PRDP Trust Fund was actually created to guaranty this condition, by making international financial assistance to the PA flow through it. This account was moreover based in Washington DC and administered by the WB, which has clearly proclaimed that disbursements through this account are established upon “assessment of the progress of implementation of the PRDP[33].

The PA also organized a conference in Bethlehem called “Palestine Investment Conference” in May 2008 gathering over 1000 delegates, ranging from the main personalities of the PA such as the President Mahmoud Abbas, the Prime Minister Salam Fayyad and other key ministers passing through the wealthiest Palestinian businessmen from abroad, especially North America and Europe, to finally including as well regional Arab capital groups from Jordan, the Gulf and elsewhere[34]. The conference was also sponsored and supported by the main Palestinian business groups present in the OPT, which included: the Arab Bank, Bank of Palestine, Paltel, Consolidated Contractors Company, Arab Palestinian Investment Company; large foreign capital such as CISCO, Intel, Coca Cola, Marriott Hotels and Booz Allen Hamilton; and US and European governmental organizations including USAID, DFID, and the French Development Agency[35].

The key objective of the conference was to portray the neo liberal austerity measures and attacks on the public sector implemented by the PA under the PRDP as encouraging measures for the business environment and interesting and attractive justification to invest in the OPT.

The conference also advertised other projects such as bringing together Arab and Israeli capital in joint investments, or the implementation of series of industrial zones in various areas where Palestinian and Israeli labor laws, salaries rates, environmental regulations, or other workplace conditions would not apply[36]. In these industrial zones, the main trade union institution in the OPT, the Palestinian General Federation of Trade Unions (PGFTU), was not been given the right to represent workers, while the movement in and out of the areas would be ruled by the Israeli military and Palestinian security forces[37]. Additionally to the exploitation of cheap labor, these zones would also be used to normalize and legitimate the existing structures of the occupation.

The Corridor for Peace and Prosperity (CPP) was also one of the various projects promoted by the conference. The CPP pursued the objective of establishing a agro industrial zone in the fertile areas of the Jordan Valley, which has turned progressively since 1967 into an Israeli military zone although scattered Palestinian villages remained in the area. The Israeli authorities have indeed taken control of water, access routes, and other resources, while expelling, until nowadays, many Palestinian farmers, confiscating lands, and establishing Israeli settlements[38].

The CPP objective to create a free trade agricultural zone in the Jordan Valley would actually make the small scale Palestinian farmers become a day laborers and sub contractors to large agro industry dominated and administered by Israeli and regional capital and investors[39]. The occupation and expropriation of land of these past 40 years in the area would therefore be accepted in this project. In addition, the agricultural production that would originate from the CPP is not directed at food security considerations, but is designed for export to Israel and the Gulf states[40].

Israeli businessmen were also very strongly invited to participate in the conference, although this was for obvious reason no largely publicized fearing the opposition of the Palestinian people to these kinds of joint projects. The Israeli authorities actually facilitated the course of the conference and its participants entered the country without problems, while they were granted the right to travel without nuisances or any security control at Israeli borders.

The conference reasserted the neo liberal passage of the PA and the inclusion of the Israeli military occupation in its development framework and plan.

Another example of the acknowledgement of the occupation instead of struggling against it is the project of the organization USAID to build alternative roads that will become the main transportation network for Palestinians. The PA Prime Minister Salam Fayyad marketed the new roads as part of his plan to establish a Palestinian state and declared that he was proud that the roads would intersect areas B and C, which includes 80% of the West Bank and touted them as “Palestinian” development projects[41]. This new roads network is actually part of the “Roadmap for Peace in the Middle East” promoted by George W. Bush, particularly the aspect emphasizing the “territorial continuity” in any talks of the Palestinian state. These alternate roads and networks of tunnels just for Palestinians (more than 48 tunnels and 34 barriers and checkpoints) guarantee geographic continuity comfortable for Israel and the settlers[42].

However, many Palestinians and activists have criticized this project and accused the PA of assisting in the ghettoization of its own people[43]. In their opinions, the road network project is the latest step in a series of attempts to displace the indigenous inhabitants from their historical geography and distance them from the continuous increase of settler communities in the West Bank. They argue that the new roads, which offer a separate means of transport for Palestinians in the area, adapt to the larger colonial project while accommodating the interest of the PA to establish its proper space in the West Bank. They also conveniently take away Palestinians from the eyesight of the Zionist colonizers, strengthening the racial divides of an already segregated and unequal society[44]. The PA has as we can observe no will or desire to challenge the reality of the occupation, but on the opposite take it in account in any project in the OPT

Regarding the PRDP, the PA bureaucracy’s will to fulfill the totality of this latter and other decisions is still to be seen and has in some aspects been delayed because of the already severed economic situation in the OPT, the continuous occupation and colonization of the West Bank, and the growing opposition to the PA in the West Bank which is under its control. These latter was at the time actually characterized by an unemployment of over 20%; a third of the population living below the poverty line; and as many as one in five households directly or indirectly dependent on employment by the PA[45]. In addition neoliberal policies are limited even in areas where the PA has some formal control and are heavily restrained by the structural realities of Israel’s occupation. The PA has therefore focused its energy in the most feasibly areas where it can benefit to proceed with neoliberal policies, which is situated in the domain of its fiscal policy. This includes firstly the reduction of public expenditure, particularly the public sector wage bill and what is mentioned to as “net lending”, and secondly by expanding tax revenues[46].

In the same time, corruption is still present and at the highest echelon of the PA. The PA President Mahmoud Abbas has allegedly deposited nearly $13 million in U.S. taxpayer aid into a secret bank account, and often uses his political connections to benefit from the absent peace process, according to testimony presented to Congress Tuesday by several Middle East experts[47]. Abbas’ sons—Yasser and Tareq—have also used their government ties to secure plum contracts and special treatment for business partners. Yasser manages a construction company that routinely “does public works projects … on behalf of the Palestinian Authority.” He also reportedly owns a corporation that received $1.89 million from USAID “to build a sewage system in the West Bank town of Hebron[48].

The Development of the General National Plan 2011-13 is intended to further promote and develop the former PRDP 2008-10 plan[49].

In 2012, the PA continued to witness an ongoing fiscal crisis. The 2011 budget actually necessitated an estimated US$1.5 billion in budget support, of which US$200 to pay development expenditures not financed directly by donors, but the PA only obtained around US$814 million in budge support and US$169 million in development aid[50]. The PA has covered this gap by borrowing from the local banking sector and aggregating over US$260 millions in arrears to the private sector[51]. Preliminary estimates suggest that the value of accumulated arrears is US$1.5-2 billion and is rising.  In 2011, arrears to the pension system were well over US$100 million[52].

The 2012 budget is presumed to present a continual budget deficit estimated to US$1.1 billion, while the PA has until now only determined US$610 in foreign support[53].  In 2011, clearance revenues on one side and the collection of domestic VAT and income tax for which the PA is responsible represented only 15% and 5% respectively of the GDP in 2011[54].

The PA has nevertheless been praised by the IMF to have reduced the deficit, notably in 2010 from 26% to 16% of GDP, while also noting progresses made in different domains. The “structural reforms» celebrated by the financial institution involved actually involved the implementation of “the social safety net to target social assistance the truly needy, the transfer of electricity distribution from several West Bank municipalities to commercial companies to reduce implicit electricity subsidies and steps toward comprehensive pension reform[55]. All these measures can be translated as austerity measures to satisfy international financial institutions and donors, including cuts in social benefits, eliminating electricity subsidies, and raising retirement age. These various decisions will harm the most vulnerable section of the society, while in the same time, the inflation rate continued to increase of 3.7% in the West Bank in the end of 2011[56].

This shows the continual dependency of the PA on external financial sources primarily due to a drop in aid from Western governments and wealthy Gulf States as well as Israeli restrictions on trade. The US government has notably cut off funding in 2011 when the PA President Mahmoud Abbas challenged calls from Washington and made a unilateral bid for statehood recognition at the United Nations. Palestinian officials declared that more than $150 million of US aid has been frozen[57].

In addition to this, the collaboration between the PA and the Israeli state has constantly deepened in many sectors, in addition to the security cooperation between the two actors. The Palestinian and Israeli Ministries of Finance have for example been collaborating to establish systems to share information that will able the PA to diminish tax leakages and significantly expand clearance revenues[58]. Clearance revenue collected by the Israeli State on behalf of the PA still actually represents about 70% of total budgetary revenue[59].

The Israeli State has even attempted to seek a $ 1 billion loan from the IMF for transfer to the PA to avoid its financial collapse, but this request was not accepted because the financial institution did not want to set a precedent of one state contracting a loan on behalf of s non state body[60]. The occupation framework is not challenged at any moment by the PA, on the opposite it worked accordingly to it and in collaboration with its occupier.

Finally, despite the economic growth presented by the different international financial institutions for the OPT these recent years, notably 5.8% and 25.7% in the West Bank and the Gaza strip respectively in 2011, the GDP on a per capita basis continued to be lower than in 1999[61].

Conclusion

Palestinians are nevertheless still struggling against all odds and their will to resist has no limit as we see and as we have seen in the past. The PA is unfortunately today a problem in the will of many Palestinians to build a new resistance strategy and to mobilize for resistance against the Israeli racist, colonial and occupation state. The PA has also in many ways “forgot” from its priorities the refugees and the Palestinians of 48, and on the opposite have served the interests of the Israeli colonizer and occupier.

Palestinians want to reclaim their cause and their struggle.

This is why a year ago a campaign led by number of Palestinian activists inside and outside of Palestine started to demand the re-democratization of the Palestinian National Council (PNC) and this is still ongoing. The PNC is the highest Palestinian legislative body, and it represents all Palestinians, whether they are refugees or not. The PNC is the body that creates the national strategies, platforms and policies of the Palestinian people, which the PLO executive committee should implement. Only a rejuvenated, progressive and democratically-elected PNC can lay the foundation for effective representation of Palestinian rights, including the right of return, the end of occupation and colonization and end of discrimination against 48 Palestinian citizens. The externally-imposed fragmentation of the Palestinian people can be overcome by means of reclaiming the Palestinian parliament in exile.

The voices of all the Palestinians have actually to be heard and power has to be given back to them. The Palestinian national movement also must be reconnected to the ongoing popular movement in the Arab world, to reinforce the struggle of the Palestinians and the people of the region against Israeli and Western imperialism.

Viva a free Palestine


[1]Hanieh A., (2002), Class, Economy, and the Second Intifada

http://monthlyreview.org/2002/10/01/class-economy-and-the-second-intifada

[2] Hanieh A., (2002), Class, Economy, and the Second Intifada

http://monthlyreview.org/2002/10/01/class-economy-and-the-second-intifada

[3] Silver C.,(2011) Donors help keep Palestinians in cages,

[4] Silver C.,(2011) Donors help keep Palestinians in cages,

[5] Laub K. (Dec 2007), IMF: Palestinian Reform Plan Doable, Associated Press.

[6] Hanieh A., (2002), Class, Economy, and the Second Intifada

http://monthlyreview.org/2002/10/01/class-economy-and-the-second-intifada

[7] Hanieh A., (2002), Class, Economy, and the Second Intifada

http://monthlyreview.org/2002/10/01/class-economy-and-the-second-intifada

[8] Hanieh A., (2002), Class, Economy, and the Second Intifada

http://monthlyreview.org/2002/10/01/class-economy-and-the-second-intifada

[9] Hanieh A., (2002), Class, Economy, and the Second Intifada

http://monthlyreview.org/2002/10/01/class-economy-and-the-second-intifada

[10] Hanieh A., (2002), Class, Economy, and the Second Intifada

http://monthlyreview.org/2002/10/01/class-economy-and-the-second-intifada

[11] Alissa S. ( 2007), The economics of an independent Palestine, in the book Hilal J., Where Now for Palestine?: The Demise of the Two State Solution, 133

[12] Alissa S. and Hilal j. (2001), Development Environment in the West Bank and Gaza Strip

[13] Alissa S. and Hilal j. (2001), Development Environment in the West Bank and Gaza Strip

[14][14] Alissa S. ( 2007), The economics of an independent Palestine, in the book Hilal J., Where Now for Palestine?: The Demise of the Two State Solution, 135

[15] Paltrade (palestine trade center) (2000), Conference conclusions and private sector recommendations, Ramallah, National Economic Dialogue Conference

[16] Roy S. (2001), Palestinian Society and Economy: the continued denial of possibility, Journal of Palestine Studies, Vol. 30, No. 4 (summer 2001), p5-20

[17] Roy S. (2001), Palestinian Society and Economy: the continued denial of possibility, Journal of Palestine Studies, Vol. 30, No. 4 (summer 2001), p5-20

[18] Roy S. (2001), Palestinian Society and Economy: the continued denial of possibility, Journal of Palestine Studies, Vol. 30, No. 4 (summer 2001), p5-20

[19] Nasr M. (2004), Monopolies and the PNA,  chapter 5 in State Formation

[20] Alissa S. ( 2007), The economics of an independent Palestine, in the book Hilal J., Where Now for Palestine?: The Demise of the Two State Solution, 135

[21] Khalidi R. and Samour S.,(2011) Neoliberalism as liberation: the statehood program and the making of the Palestine national movement, Journal of Palestine Studies Vol. XL, No. 2 (Winter 2011), pp. 6–25

[23]Hanieh A. (2008),  Palestine in the Middle East: Opposing Neoliberalism and US Power, Part 1; http://mrzine.monthlyreview.org/2008/hanieh190708a.html#_ednref5

[24] Hanieh A. (2008),  Palestine in the Middle East: Opposing Neoliberalism and US Power, Part 1; http://mrzine.monthlyreview.org/2008/hanieh190708a.html#_ednref5

[25] Khalidi R. and Samour S.,(2011) Neoliberalism as liberation: the statehood program and the making of the Palestine national movement, Journal of Palestine Studies Vol. XL, No. 2 (Winter 2011), pp. 6–25

[26] Khalidi R. and Samour S.,(2011) Neoliberalism as liberation: the statehood program and the making of the Palestine national movement, Journal of Palestine Studies Vol. XL, No. 2 (Winter 2011), pp. 6–25

[27]Khalidi R. and Samour S.,(2011) Neoliberalism as liberation: the statehood program and the making of the Palestine national movement, Journal of Palestine Studies Vol. XL, No. 2 (Winter 2011), pp. 6–25

[28] Hanieh A. (2008),  Palestine in the Middle East: Opposing Neoliberalism and US Power, Part 1; http://mrzine.monthlyreview.org/2008/hanieh190708a.html#_ednref5

[29]  Stop the Wall,( 20 May 2008.)”National BDS Steering Committee: Bethlehem Investment Conference: Development or Normalization?”

[30] Hanieh A. (2008),  Palestine in the Middle East: Opposing Neoliberalism and US Power, Part 1; http://mrzine.monthlyreview.org/2008/hanieh190708a.html#_ednref5

[31] Hanieh A. (2008),  Palestine in the Middle East: Opposing Neoliberalism and US Power, Part 1; http://mrzine.monthlyreview.org/2008/hanieh190708a.html#_ednref5

[32] Hanieh A. (2008),  Palestine in the Middle East: Opposing Neoliberalism and US Power, Part 1; http://mrzine.monthlyreview.org/2008/hanieh190708a.html#_ednref5

[33] World Bank, Trust Fund Details – as of June 2008, http://web.worldbank.org.

[34]  See the conference website at <www.pic-palestine.ps> for the conference attendees, press coverage, and presentations.

[35] Hanieh A. (2008),  Palestine in the Middle East: Opposing Neoliberalism and US Power, Part 1; http://mrzine.monthlyreview.org/2008/hanieh190708a.html#_ednref5

[36] Hanieh A. (2008),  Palestine in the Middle East: Opposing Neoliberalism and US Power, Part 1; http://mrzine.monthlyreview.org/2008/hanieh190708a.html#_ednref5

[37] Hanieh A. (2008),  Palestine in the Middle East: Opposing Neoliberalism and US Power, Part 1; http://mrzine.monthlyreview.org/2008/hanieh190708a.html#_ednref5

[38] Hanieh A. (2008),  Palestine in the Middle East: Opposing Neoliberalism and US Power, Part 1; http://mrzine.monthlyreview.org/2008/hanieh190708a.html#_ednref5

[39] Stop the Wall(May 2008), “Development or normalization?  A Critique of West Bank Development Approaches and Projects,”

[40] Hanieh A. (2008),  Palestine in the Middle East: Opposing Neoliberalism and US Power, Part 1; http://mrzine.monthlyreview.org/2008/hanieh190708a.html#_ednref5

[41] Yehya A., (July 6 2012),  USAID in Palestine: Building Roads to Cut Off the People, http://english.al-akhbar.com/content/usaid-palestine-building-roads-cut-people , Al Akhbar,

[42] Yehya A., (July 6 2012),  USAID in Palestine: Building Roads to Cut Off the People, http://english.al-akhbar.com/content/usaid-palestine-building-roads-cut-people , Al Akhbar,

[43] Yehya A., (July 6 2012),  USAID in Palestine: Building Roads to Cut Off the People, http://english.al-akhbar.com/content/usaid-palestine-building-roads-cut-people , Al Akhbar,

[44] Yehya A., (July 6 2012),  USAID in Palestine: Building Roads to Cut Off the People, http://english.al-akhbar.com/content/usaid-palestine-building-roads-cut-people , Al Akhbar,

[45] These statistics are available in various reports from the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, Palestinian National Authority (Ramallah: Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, 2010), http://www.pcbs.gov.ps/Default.aspx?tabID=1&lang=en

[46] Khalidi R. and Samour S.,(2011) Neoliberalism as liberation: the statehood program and the making of the Palestine national movement, Journal of Palestine Studies Vol. XL, No. 2 (Winter 2011), pp. 6–25

[49] Ministry of Planning and Administrative Development (2010),

Proposal on the Development of General National Plan 2011-13 http://www.mop-gov.ps/web_files/issues_file/Cabinet%20Paper%20on%202011-2013%20National%20Plan-En.pdf

[50] Word Bank (2012, March),  Stagnation or Revival?  Palestinian Economic Prospects http://siteresources.worldbank.org/INTWESTBANKGAZA/Resources/WorldBankAHLCreportMarch2012.pdf

[51] Word Bank (2012, March), Stagnation or Revival?  Palestinian Economic Prospects http://siteresources.worldbank.org/INTWESTBANKGAZA/Resources/WorldBankAHLCreportMarch2012.pdf

[52] Word Bank (2012, March),  Stagnation or Revival?  Palestinian Economic Prospects http://siteresources.worldbank.org/INTWESTBANKGAZA/Resources/WorldBankAHLCreportMarch2012.pdf

[53] Word Bank (2012, March),  Stagnation or Revival?  Palestinian Economic Prospects http://siteresources.worldbank.org/INTWESTBANKGAZA/Resources/WorldBankAHLCreportMarch2012.pdf

[54] Word Bank (2012, March),  Stagnation or Revival?  Palestinian Economic Prospects http://siteresources.worldbank.org/INTWESTBANKGAZA/Resources/WorldBankAHLCreportMarch2012.pdf

[55]International Monetary Fund (IMF) (2011 April),  MACROECONOMIC AND FISCAL FRAMEWORK FOR THE WEST BANK AND GAZA: SEVENTH REVIEW OF PROGRESS, http://www.imf.org/external/country/WBG/RR/2011/041311.pdf

[56] International Monetary Fund (IMF) (2011 April),  MACROECONOMIC AND FISCAL FRAMEWORK FOR THE WEST BANK AND GAZA: SEVENTH REVIEW OF PROGRESS, http://www.imf.org/external/country/WBG/RR/2011/041311.pdf

[57] Al Ahram English, (2012, March 17) IMF warns Palestinians may face cuts without more aid http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/3/0/36953/Business/0/IMF-warns-Palestinians-may-face-cuts-without-more-.aspx

[58] Word Bank (2012, March),  Stagnation or Revival?  Palestinian Economic Prospects http://siteresources.worldbank.org/INTWESTBANKGAZA/Resources/WorldBankAHLCreportMarch2012.pdf

[59] International Monetary Fund (IMF) (2011 April),  MACROECONOMIC AND FISCAL FRAMEWORK FOR THE WEST BANK AND GAZA: SEVENTH REVIEW OF PROGRESS, http://www.imf.org/external/country/WBG/RR/2011/041311.pdf

[60] Al Ahram English, (2012, July 2nd)Israel sought $1bn IMF loan for Palestinians http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/3/12/46697/Business/Economy/Israel-sought-bn-IMF-loan-for-Palestinians-.aspx

[61] Word Bank (2012, March),  Stagnation or Revival?  Palestinian Economic Prospects http://siteresources.worldbank.org/INTWESTBANKGAZA/Resources/WorldBankAHLCreportMarch2012.pdf

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