Palestine : EU releases 23 million euros to pay salaries of health and education workers.
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Janos Fernandez
Wednesday 5 August 2020 Last update on Wednesday, August 5, 2020 At 8:36 AM

The Palestinian Authority has announced that it can only pay part of the salaries of civil servants. Brussels has released a grant of 23 million euros that will partially pay the June salaries of 43,000 civil servants, primarily those in the medical and educational sector.

The impact of this wage failure is notable as the salaries of state employees alone constitute 20% of Palestinian GDP.

In detail, civil servants paid NIS 1,750 or less will receive their full salary. Beyond this threshold, they will receive a maximum of 50% of their salary, but not less than 1,750 shekels.

As everywhere else, the coronavirus crisis has harmed the Palestinian economy, but to this general factor has been added the decision of the Palestinian Authority to refuse since May the tax revenues collected by Israel on its behalf, in order to protest against planned annexations in the West Bank.

On the other hand, the PA is the largest employer in the West Bank and this decision has serious consequences, especially for the police force who already receive only part of their salary. Yet Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh confirmed on July 28 that he would continue to reject Israeli tax revenues.

Knowing that these taxes represent a large portion of the PA budget, they have grown even more important since the COVID-19 crisis, which has seen many businesses shut down and Palestinians confined and unemployed. The global situation has also caused a reduction in donations from abroad, with each country focusing as a priority on the management of its own territory.

As a reminder, the country received $ 205 million in customs revenue with expenses of $ 244.5 million for officials, retirees and families of Palestinians convicted of terrorism in Israel.

The only lifeline at the moment is aid from international organizations, primarily the European Union which has helped the country on several occasions and is the main donor. The Union has therefore granted 2.8 billion euros in direct aid since 2008 and 1.1 billion in collaboration with the UN between 2017 and 2020.

It should also be recalled that Palestine had benefited in May from 95 million dollars in cumulative international aid.

In the end, the situation does not seem on the verge of improving at the present time and ad hoc aid is only used to manage the crises affecting an impoverished population and an uncertain future, when it should prepare. in jubilation Eid El-Kebir.