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Destruction of Economic Structure

Destruction of the Economic Structure:

Israel, the occupying Power, has undertaken a variety of broad measures, effectively causing the destruction of the Palestinian economy. These measures include the following: strict financial regulations on all activities related to industry; closure or takeover of banks; imposition of taxes, the withholding of tax revenue belonging to the Palestinian people, levies & fines (in many cases tax assessments run higher than the annual revenues of a business); withdrawal of operating licenses and closure of farms and businesses; destruction of crops, industrial equipment and other property; stringent measures against agriculture and fishing, including the bulldozing of farmland, the uprooting of trees, and bans on fishing off the Gaza coast; restrictions on the movement of labor; tight controls on export and trade of Palestinian goods; regular and systematic closures with in the Occupied Territory to the outside world.

The West Bank and Gaza have been effectively transformed into "captive markets" for Israel, whereby Israeli products enter unencumbered by tariffs and customs and free from local or international competition. Local businesses are compelled to buy everything from Israel. The occupation also transformed Palestinian civilians into a pool of cheap labor for Israel and within a few years, a large segment of the Palestinian population became dependent on Israel for employment, mainly in menial labor and construction.

At the same time, the occupying Power, while placing heavy taxes upon the population, did not improve or maintain the infrastructure of the territories in return. The infrastructure was left to deteriorate and minimal municipal, social and health services were provided.