pa israel to expand gaza crossing for exports
Last Updated : GMT 06:41:18
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PA: Israel to expand Gaza crossing for exports

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today PA: Israel to expand Gaza crossing for exports

Gaza City - Ma’an

Nathmi Mhanna, head of crossings for the Palestinian Authority, said Friday that the Kerem Shalom terminal between Israel and Gaza would be expanded. The expansion increases exports permitted from the enclave, he said. As Israel began allowing more exports to go abroad, the crossing will be expanded to new areas and new goods. Israel has informed the Palestinian Authority that the expansion will include new areas separating exports from imports. The improvements will also allow the PA to begin pumping gas and diesel, he said. The expansion comes after a request from President Mahmoud Abbas and is being implemented under the supervision of Salam Fayyad, the prime minister based in Ramallah, Mhanna said. Israeli officials could not be reached over the weekend, but any increase in exports will be welcome news to manufacturers and farmers in Gaza who have been unable to market their goods abroad for years. The Palestinian Bureau of Statistics says the enclave's exports in 2005 were worth $41 million, but that figure plummeted to less than $1 million after 2006 as Israel tightened a blockade on the enclave. Exports have increased in the following years, but Israel still controls most imports and exports through its land border with Gaza. Egypt also tightly controls a pedestrian crossing in the south.

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