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    West Bank and Gaza Investment Climate Assessment : Fragmentation and Uncertainty
    (Washington, DC, 2014-01) World Bank Group
    This Investment Climate Assessment (ICA) seeks to evaluate the conditions under which the Palestinian private sector currently operates in the West Bank (including East Jerusalem) and the Gaza strip. This assessment is both an update and expansion on a similar assessment undertaken by the World Bank in 2006. As such, it provides both a snapshot of the investment climate in 2013, as well as a longitudinal view of what has changed in the intervening seven years and, just as importantly, what has not. Where relevant, it also compares indicators of the Palestinian investment climate with those of other countries in the region and beyond. The objective of this assessment is to provide the Palestinian business community, the Palestinian Authority (PA), and the international development community with an empirical analysis of the investment climate under which Palestinian businesses operate. The report describes the key constraints on business and investment and identifies reform priorities for those aspects of the investment climate and constraints which are within the PA's control, as well as some policy recommendations for areas outside of the PA's control, but within the domain of development partner assistance agendas and/or Israeli policies. This analysis is intended to inform Palestinian policy-maker actions to improve the business environment. It can also help inform the actions of other concerned parties, including the international development community, regional actors, and the Government of Israel regarding policies that affect Palestinian economic growth and sustainability.
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    West Bank and Gaza : Public Expenditure and Financial Accountability
    (Washington, DC, 2013-06-17) World Bank ; European Union ; Assistance Technique France ; U.N. Development Programme
    The purpose of the Public Expenditure and Financial Accountability (PEFA) assessment is to review the performance of the Palestinian Authority's (PA's) Public Financial Management (PFM) framework. The assessment examines progress since an informal PEFA assessment in 2007 and provides a baseline for supporting the PA in refining, where necessary, the current PFM reform strategy. The assessment has been undertaken following the PEFA performance measurement framework methodology as revised in January 2011. The assessment builds on previous reports by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on various aspects of the PA's PFM system. The assessment is based on publicly available documents and supplementary information provided by the PA and other stakeholders. These include annual budget documents, annual fiscal outturn reports, and specific reports produced by various stakeholders. The scope of the assessment includes the Public Financial Management of the central government, the subnational government (municipalities and community villages), and the autonomous public entities which are all under the umbrella of the Palestinian investment fund. The PA was established in 1994 following the 1993 Oslo agreement, with responsibility for the West Bank and Gaza (WBG) under Palestinian control. The PA has adopted a PFM model which broadly follows the Anglophone model, but in the years following its establishment, authority has increasingly become concentrated in the executive branch and the role of parliament has been reduced. The current PEFA assessment outlines a strong link between the various reforms that require a more integrated technical assistance approach. Many of these reforms are to be implemented together with other interconnected reforms in order to produce effective results. This underscores the challenging context, in which these reforms have to be implemented, but also the opportunity to create synergy and impetus between, and ownership of, the various components of the reform agenda.
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    West Bank and Gaza - Investment Climate Assessment : Unlocking the Potential of the Private Sector
    (Washington, DC, 2007-03) World Bank
    It is the purpose of this Investment Climate Assessment (ICA) to look at what hinders the move of the Palestinians to new markets and what can be done to encourage it. The ICA reveals that shrinking market access and the lack of free movement are the main constraints to growth for Palestinian enterprises. Relative to other countries in the region, the Palestinian investment climate is good: petty corruption is low, the bureaucracy is relatively efficient and financial markets are well developed. Despite this, Palestinian enterprises have not invested enough to maintain their international competitiveness. However, the report points out that the growing settlements and movement restrictions imposed by Israeli authorities for security reasons overshadow all other elements of the investment climate. The restrictions close off markets, raise transaction costs and prevent producers from guaranteeing delivery dates. The closures also serve to keep firms small and prevent them from attaining minimum efficient scale. The ICA policy recommendations fall into three broad categories: movement and access, the investment climate, and enterprise capabilities. For the Palestinian private sector to fulfill its potential and create the jobs required by the rapidly expanding population, all three of these areas must be addressed. However, re-establishing free movement and access, while maintaining Israeli security, is the sine qua non for a viable Palestinian economy. Without a concerted political effort to re-open markets and lower transaction costs the Palestinian private sector is bound to fail.