The results of the PMA business cycle index show a marked improvement in the overall index for Palestine, which rose from -5.7 points in January 2022 to 4.9 points in January 2023.
In the West Bank, the overall index rose from -0.6 points in January 2022 to 7.6 points in January 2023. Industry (from 0.7 to 3.4 points) and agriculture (from 0.4 to 2.2) were the two main drivers of this growth.
Overall, businesses surveyed in the West Bank reported stable production levels.
In the Gaza Strip, the overall index fell from -31.9 points in January 2022 to -9.3 points in January 2023, due to the rise in the construction index (from -10.1 to – 2.9) and the trade index (from – 15.8 to – 10.1).
The index for industry stood at 3.6 points against -4.3 in January 2022. However, companies are anticipating a decline in the level of production for the next three months.
Decline in public debt in 2022
Calculated “excluding payment arrears”, the amount of Palestinian public debt was reduced from USD 3.85 billion at the end of December 2021 to USD 3.55 billion at the end of December 2022 (-7.8%).
Domestic debt (from USD 2.53 billion at the end of December 2021 to USD 2.24 billion at the end of December 2022) and external debt (from USD 1.32 billion at the end of December 2021 to USD 1.30 billion at the end of December 2022) are also in decrease.
This reduction in the public debt is explained by the increase in tax revenue, the reduction in extraordinary expenditure linked to covid-19 as well as by the budgetary rationalization efforts undertaken. However, nearly half of the civil servants were paid 80% of their salary in 2022 due to the budgetary difficulties of the Palestinian Authority.
With €16 million in 2022, France is one of the main contributors to the Palestinian budget, along with the European Union, the World Bank, Norway and Algeria.
Strong rise in the producer price index
The General Producer Price Index (PPI) in Palestine recorded a strong increase of 7.43% in 2022 compared to the previous year.
Unsurprisingly, energy prices (12.76%) are responsible for a significant part of this increase.
However, prices rose in all sectors, such as fishing (12.26%), water and sanitation (6.31%), or manufacturing industry (4 .78%).
Imports increased by 18% in 2022 compared to 2021. Imports from Israel accounted for 57% of the total import value.
Source : Embassy of France in Israel
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