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Palestinian Territories

An estimated 90% of vessels that would have used the Suez Canal are now re-routing to avoid the chance of attacks in the Red Sea

Red Sea attacks dent Mena business activity

The attacks on shipping in the Red Sea are depressing economies across the Middle East and North Africa, as supply chain disruption takes its toll on business activity. The latest economic monthly bulletins for the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Egypt all show a drop in operating activity for January. Houthi rebels in Yemen have been […]

Shoppers look for bargains at a Cairo supermarket. Egypt's debt crisis. is worsening

Egypt stable for now but vulnerable, economists warn

A few days after Israeli forces launched a ground offensive in Gaza, Fitch Ratings downgraded Egypt’s credit score to B- from B. The conflict could scare off tourists and investors, the ratings agency said in November, posing a risk to Egypt’s economy. This was Fitch’s second downgrade in six months: it stripped Egypt of B+ status […]

Markets find it 'very hard' to price geopolitical events, said UBS wealth management CIO Mark Haefele

Investors unsure on pricing Gaza conflict, says UBS

Global investors and markets are “not sure” how to price in the fallout from the Israel-Gaza conflict, according to Swiss private wealth bank UBS.  “It’s very hard for the markets to price these events,” Mark Haefele, chief investment officer in the global wealth management division at Swiss bank UBS, told reporters on Thursday. “So far, […]

Workers at Majnoon oil field in Iraq. Analysts do not expect the conflict to have a big effect on oil supply

Oil prices surge as conflict intensifies in Israel

Oil prices rose by more than 3 percent on Monday in the wake of Hamas’s surprise attack on Israel, which threatens to destabilise the Middle East. Brent crude was trading at $87.65 a barrel, up 3.6 percent, by 17:41 GST while US West Texas Intermediate was at $86.15 a barrel, up just over 4 percent. […]

Palestine startups

Funding options on the rise for Palestine startups

Palestine is home to a wealth of entrepreneurial talent but its startups have struggled to gain access to funding. A number of initiatives are aiming to change all that by doubling the amount of startup funding available and offering mentoring opportunities. Support is also being offered to Palestinians living in the Middle East and North […]

Intersect innovation hub palestine startups

Innovation hub helps launch Palestinian startups in Gulf

Startups in Palestine are increasingly expanding in the Gulf as a way of overcoming hurdles such as a lack of access to funding and support systems. Central to their strategy is the Intersect Innovation Hub, a business incubator that is helping to build bridges between Palestinian startups and the Gulf region. Rateb Rabi, CEO of […]

World Bank says Palestinian economic growth to slow

The Palestinian economy is expected to grow about three percent in 2023 after a four percent post-Covid rebound in 2022, as tensions with Israel and the impact of the war in Ukraine pose serious downside risks, the World Bank said. The World Bank said it will present its outlook in Brussels this week at a […]

Food security

$5.5m initiative for food security in Mediterranean countries

A new $5.5 million package of technical assistance to improve food security in Tunisia, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco and the West Bank and Gaza has been agreed by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations. The joint initiative, which will be launched in January, is […]

Palestinian comedians strike a chord in occupied cities

Palestinian American Amer Zahr is on a mission to heal through humour. In 2015 he started bringing fellow Arab American comedians from the United States to perform stand-up across occupied Palestinian cities including Nablus, Bethlehem and Ramallah. Seven years later, Zahr’s now annual Palestine Comedy Festival is still going strong. “Laughter is therapy,” he told […]

Airport, Airplane, Transportation

Palestinians urged not to use Israeli airport for concessions

The Palestinian Authority urged Palestinians not to take advantage of concessions promised by Israel that would allow them to travel through Ramon airport in southern Israel, saying they should have their own airport. Israel’s Airports Authority this month said Palestinians from the occupied West Bank would be offered special flights from Ramon, near the Red […]

No flights yet from Israel for West Bank Palestinians

A group of Palestinian passengers flew to Cyprus from an Israeli airport on Monday, but the flight was not organised under a promised arrangement easing travel restrictions for residents of the occupied West Bank, an airports authority spokesperson said. Israeli authorities agreed earlier this month, following pressure from the United States, to ease some of […]

Person, Human, Clothing

Palestinians working in Israel strike over new payment methods

Tens of thousands of Palestinians employed in Israel staged a one-day strike on Sunday in protest at a decision to pay their salaries into bank accounts rather than in cash. The new payment method was agreed between Palestinian and Israeli authorities looking for a more efficient and secure way to pay salaries, but workers fear […]

A worker displays grains of wheat at a mill in Lebanon, where the cost of a loaf of bread rose 70 percent in March

Ukraine war drives Gulf to double down on food security

As the war in Ukraine has pushed up food prices and disrupted supply chains, hard-hit Mena countries explore ways to protect themselves In Abu Dhabi clusters of fresh tomatoes are growing inside rows of climate-controlled greenhouses in the middle of the desert – just one example of the lengths the arid region must go to […]

Person, Human, Room

King Abdullah joins Biden to defuse Jerusalem tension

Jordan’s King Abdullah agreed with U.S. President Joe Biden on the need to prevent a repeat of recent confrontations in Jerusalem’s Muslim holy sites that sparked concerns of wider conflict, state media said. In a phone call on Monday, Abdullah was quoted as saying the cornerstone of peace was a comprehensive Arab Israeli settlement based […]

Jordan’s king agreed with U.S. Biden on need to defuse Jerusalem tension

Jordan’s King Abdullah agreed with U.S. President Joe Biden on the need to prevent a repeat of recent confrontations in Jerusalem’s Muslim holy sites that sparked concerns of wider conflict, state media said. In a phone call on Monday, Abdullah was quoted as saying the cornerstone of peace was a comprehensive Arab Israeli settlement based on a two-state solution […]

EU plans to counter Russia with food diplomacy in North Africa, Middle East

The EU aims to address rising wheat and fertilizer prices and expected shortages in the Balkans, North Africa and the Middle East with “food diplomacy” to counter Russia’s narrative on the impact of its Ukraine invasion, EU diplomats and officials say. Food insecurity was causing “resentment” in vulnerable countries in these regions, while Moscow was […]