Gaza’s Hope: The Fishermen. Yes . . . But?

InvestPalestine was pleased to see Tobias Buck today in the Financial Times, after the latest conflict, recognising the initial gains for Gaza’s economy…and most of all, for its hard-pressed people, starting with its fishermen.

(See the earlier story by InvestPalestine: “Gaza’s Hope”, 19th November, below.)

But much, much more needs to be done.

A Palestinian woman in Beiut Ilu, west of Ramallah, protesting about the destruction of her olive trees by Israeli settlers. She, and other farmers in the West Bank, will be hoping that they, too, like the fishermen and farmers in Gaza, can benefit from some relaxation of Israeli restrictions. Photo: Issam Rimawi, APA Images, 16 April, 2012.

(Click on the image to enlarge it.)

Reports that the initial relaxation will also apply to Gaza’s farmers tilling their lands near the Israeli border is a good sign. Continue reading


Gaza’s Hope

Tonight, Monday the 19th of November, here in London, there is hope that the huge loss of life in Gaza — infants, children, women, fathers, uncles, cousins, the elderly — may, for once, result in some permanent, concrete changes for all.

A New Dawn? Gaza’s fishermen may, at last, get full rights to their fishing grounds in the Mediterranean. And the border crossings to the Sinai…and Israel…might be opened, thanks to Hamas’ new prowess on the international diplomatic scene, as well as, with its rockets, in the air. But many people in Gaza are hoping, simply, that the Israeli bombardment will stop. Photo: Mahmoud Hams, AFP/Getty Images, January, 2012.

Israel’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu has, according to the most authoritative sources, had to step back from a full-scale invasion, not least because the casualties involved for the Israeli army would have tested his credibility among an Israeli public preparing to go to the polls in January.

We shall see.

While President Obama in the US and European Foreign Ministers continue to dither amidst the escalating bloodshed, Arab ministers, ambassadors and dignitaries are taking the risk of visiting beseiged Gaza tomorrow …

…Not to mention the risks taken by their hosts, on the ground.

Meanwhile, let’s hope that by next year, at least, some of Hamas’demands will have been met.

If so, the future of Gaza’s economy, and of its people, will be brighter than it has been for many years.

We’ll keep you posted.


Editor’s Note: Coming Up

As Mahmoud Abbas prepares to go to the UN General Assembly for a vote recognising Palestinian statehood, we’ll be reporting on the consequences on the ground in the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem, not just the diplomatic repercussions in New York, Washington, Europe and the Arab world.

Talk about the possibility that the the Oslo Accords — and the related Paris Protocol governing economic relations between Israel and the Palestinian territories — could be abolished has huge significance for people and businesses on both sides of the border. Donor funds for the Palestinian Authority could be squeezed even more, threatening the livelihoods of families throughout the West Bank and Gaza.

Ramallah at Night. Will the lights go out? Despite fears, it’s unlikely that international donors will allow the Palestinian Authority, based in Ramallah, to collapse. Photo: CSM.

Most importantly, we’ll be highlighting two entrepreneurs who have made a huge impact on Palestinian lives over the past decades: Hashim Shawa, CEO of the Bank of Palestine, and Fadi Ghandour, the Beirut-born, Jordanian entrepreneur who has fostered a revolution that is not yet fully appreciated: creating new start-ups — with global impact – based on the huge, untapped potential of young Palestinians in the diaspora, as well as providing a superb example of his own struggles creating a successful $700 million company, Aramex.

Hashim Shawa, CEO of the Bank of Palestine, is reaching out to Palestinians everywhere. Photo: Dubai News.

Fadi Ghandour is an “Angel Investor” for new Palestinian start-ups. Photo: Financial Times, London.

Meanwhile, here’s the latest international press coverage, which has obtained in the November issue of The Middle East magazine. (See ‘About’ on the menu at the top of this page.)

Thanks to Palestinian companies like Al Quds Holding, PADICO Holdings and investments by the Nusseibeh family, not to mention another international success story, CCC — and these are just a few of the companies involved — Palestinians in East Jerusalem have managed to stay in their homes, and in the Holy City, despite all.

Palestinian companies helping to promote jobs, investment and trade in East Jerusalem are now getting international press coverage. Credit: The Middle East magazine.

(See the full article, as it first appeared on, 21 October, below.)

Don’t forget, that the 29th of November is the 34th anniversary of the UN’s declaration of 29 November as ‘The Day of International Solidarity with the Palestinian People,’ and the 65th anniversary of UN Resolution 181, declaring an independent state in Palestine.

Thanks for reading!