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Economy of the West Bank

From Academic Kids

Economy - overview: Economic conditions in the West Bank - where economic activity is governed by the Paris Economic Protocol of April 1994 between Israel and the Palestinian Authority - have deteriorated since the early 1990s. Real per capita GDP for the West Bank and Gaza Strip (WBGS) declined 36.1% between 1992 and 1996 owing to the combined effect of falling aggregate incomes and robust population growth. The downturn in economic activity was largely the result of Israeli closure policies - the imposition of generalized border closures in response to security incidents in Israel - which disrupted previously established labor and commodity market relationships between Israel and the WBGS. The most serious negative social effect of this downturn has been the emergence of chronic unemployment; average unemployment rates in the WBGS during the 1980s were generally under 5%; by the mid-1990s this level had risen to over 20%. Since 1997 Israel's use of comprehensive closures has decreased and, in 1998, Israel implemented new policies to reduce the impact of closures and other security procedures on the movement of Palestinian goods and labor. In October 1999, Israel permitted the opening of a safe passage between the West Bank and the Gaza Strip in accordance with the 1995 Interim Agreement. These changes in the conduct of economic activity have fueled a moderate economic recovery in 1998-99.

GDP: purchasing power parity - $3.3 billion (1999 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 4.6% (1999 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $2,050 (1999 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 33%
industry: 25%
services: 42% (includes Gaza Strip) (1995 est.)

Population below poverty line: NA%

Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 5% (includes Gaza Strip) (1999 est.)

Labor force: NA

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 13%, industry 13%, commerce, restaurants, and hotels 12%, construction 8%, other services 54% (1996)

Unemployment rate: 14.5% (includes Gaza Strip) (1998 est.)

Budget:
revenues: $1.6 billion
expenditures: $1.73 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (includes Gaza Strip) (1999 est.)

Industries: generally small family businesses that produce cement, textiles, soap, olive-wood carvings, and mother-of-pearl souvenirs; the Israelis have established some small-scale, modern industries in the settlements and industrial centers

Industrial production growth rate: NA%

Electricity - production: NA kWh; note - most electricity imported from Israel; East Jerusalem Electric Company buys and distributes electricity to Palestinians in East Jerusalem and its concession in the West Bank; the Israel Electric Company directly supplies electricity to most Jewish residents and military facilities; at the same time, some Palestinian municipalities, such as Nabulus and Janin, generate their own electricity from small power plants

Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: NA%
hydro: NA%
nuclear: NA%
other: NA%

Electricity - consumption: NA kWh

Electricity - exports: NA kWh

Electricity - imports: NA kWh

Agriculture - products: olives, citrus, vegetables; beef, dairy products

Exports: $682 million (includes Gaza Strip) (f.o.b., 1998 est.)

Exports - commodities: olives, fruit, vegetables, limestone

Exports - partners: Israel, Jordan, Gaza Strip

Imports: $2.5 billion (includes Gaza Strip) (c.i.f., 1998 est.)

Imports - commodities: food, consumer goods, construction materials

Imports - partners: Israel, Jordan, Gaza Strip

Debt - external: $108 million (includes Gaza Strip) (1997 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $800 million pledged (includes Gaza Strip) (1999)

Currency: 1 new Israeli shekel (NIS) = 100 new agorot; 1 Jordanian dinar (JD) = 1,000 fils

Exchange rates: new Israeli shekels (NIS) per US$1 - 4.2260 (November 1999), 3.8001 (1998), 3.4494 (1997), 3.1917 (1996), 3.0113 (1995); Jordanian dinars (JD) per US$1 - fixed rate of 0.7090 (from 1996), 0.7005 (1995)

Fiscal year: calendar year (since 1 January 1992)

See also : West Bank
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