economic development

AICS Jerusalem is strongly committed to promoting the development of the Palestinian economy in order to enhance job opportunity and increase incomes mainly for the most vulnerable groups, through innovative financial tools and technical assistance to small and medium enterprises and to the Palestinian public institutions with the mandate of regulation and supervision within the sector. The portfolio includes 10 Programs, 7 bilateral Programs including three soft loans, and 3 multilateral Programs, for an overall amount of 81.6 million euros.

Three out of the bilateral programs includes a soft loan component; START-UP PALESTINE aimed to tackle the need of credit of vulnerable categories and financing micro and small entrepreneurship’s initiatives through existing financial institutions as well as expanding the operational capacity of Small and Medium Enterprises (SME’s) to stimulate employment opportunities. The Palestinian SME Development Program aimed to support in promoting economic growth in Palestine, revitalizing the local private sector, creating new job opportunities, and reducing unemployment with the overall goal of ameliorating the socio-economic conditions of the Palestinian population through establishing a credit line to facilitate access to credit for the Palestinian private sector providing loans at concessional terms for equipment purchase. The Electricity Utility Management Program (EUMP) is the third soft loan that has been provided for the rehabilitation of the electric distribution network in the West Bank.

The other bilateral initiatives are Financial Inclusion Palestine Program (FIN-PAL) aiming to contribute to promoting economic growth and job creation for economically (women, young people, farmers) and geographically (East Jerusalem, Area C and Gaza Strip) marginalized groups, by fostering their financial inclusion, more specifically the Program aims to strengthen the capacities of the key actors operating on the supply side of the Palestinian financial market including Micro Finance Institutions, Saving and Credit Cooperatives as well as to institutional actors (Palestine Monetary Authority, Palestinian Capital Market Authority and Ministry of Finance). Enhancing the Business Environment for the Micro, Small and Medium Palestinian Enterprises (EPEC) Program aims to contribute to the improvement of the competitiveness of Palestinian micro, small and medium enterprises through activities that support Palestinian Energy and Natural Resources Authority and Ministry of Finance in enhancing the business environment and MSME’s productivity, with a special focus on the access to renewable energies and their use to significantly reduce the production costs through a lower energy dependence. Two bilateral Programs has been recently approved and will start implementation in 2022; Increase Access to The Labor Market for Youth Job Seekers Through Business and Vocational Training Program “AYADI” aiming to contribute to increasing access to the labour market for youth job seekers by enhancing their skills through Continuous Vocational Education and Training (CVET) by using the Work-Based Learning Methodology and providing seed fund grants for the establishment of new businesses. Support to Conduct the Agricultural Census 2021 Project - The agricultural census aims to establish an updated detailed and accurate holdings database that will assist in planning and policy making at all levels related to the agricultural sector, and through the support of this project the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS) will provide data on the structure of agriculture especially for small administrative and geographical units, rare items, and enable detailed cross-tabulations, provide data that can be used as a benchmark for and reconciliation of current agricultural statistics and for setting estimates for subsequent years, and provide frames for agricultural sampling surveys.

Through the multilateral channel, the program Promoting resilience and livelihoods in the Gaza Strip through equitable modernization of the fisheries & aquaculture value chain implemented by FAO aims at strengthening resilience and livelihoods of Gazan fishing communities through promoting the establishment of a marine cage farming social business, and Be the Impact Program implemented by ILO, AICS and the Cooperative Work Agency-CWA aims to strengthen the cooperative system and the social entrepreneurship in Palestine by enhancing the skills and competences of the different relevant stakeholders (CWA, the General Cooperative Union, the 5 Sectoral Cooperative Unions, and the cooperatives). And Support Agri-Food Coop Network in Palestine (SANET) that was recently approved and will start implementation in 2022 by CIHEAM Bari and the Ministry of Agriculture aiming to contribute to the enhancement of the agriculture sector as a mean of resilience, job creation and socio- economic development in Palestine with a special focus on youth and women inclusion.