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Source: United Nations Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process (UNSCO)
31 October 2009




Since 1996 UNSCO has continually monitored and reported on socio-economic conditions in the occupied Palestinian territory and in the process established an extensive socio-economic database. UNSCO does not create raw data but rather uses available data which, in the occupied Palestinian territory is relatively abundant. However, the data that is available tends to remain dispersed and is not always automatically shared between institutions. The objective of the database is to bring together in one place a wide variety of data on socio-economic conditions and by doingso present a broader, more detailed perspective on socio-economic conditions. The purpose of this report is to: 1) broaden the access to this database through publication of the most recent data gathered; and 2) provide readers with up to date information on socio-economic conditions in the occupied Palestinian territory.

The report is divided into three sections:

Section 1 consists of a one-page fact sheet which provides a snapshot view of the socioeconomic situation for the current and previous reporting period and it provides, for reference purposes, base line figures for the period just prior to the outbreak of the second Intifada.

Sections 2 and 3 report on the Macro-economic situation, the Private sector and the banking modules of the UNSCO database. They provide data on the last six reporting periods for each indicator as well as base line data, which is pre Al-Aqsa intifada. In addition, summary analysis on observed trends is given below each table.
1 These numbers may be adjusted
2 For a more detailed report on sections C (Macro-economy) and D (Private sector), see data below.
3 CPI Base year 2004 = 100
4 MoNE data does not include aggregates or aid flows in Aug 2000.
5 * Please note that data for Q3-2008 has been adjusted by the PMA for all bank credit categories.
6 Adjusted unemployment is calculated by adding discouraged workers (i.e. unemployed but no longer seeking work) to the ILO standard.
7 Effective closure days are calculated by adding all days when a crossing was fully or partially closed excluding weekend and holiday. Karni - conveyor belt/chute -The conveyor belt/chute for cereals and animal feed at Kani is the only operational one.



For further information please contact: Gaza Strip: Raed Raqeb raqeb@un.org


The exchange rate between the US dollar and the NIS declined by approximately 1.06% in October 2009 compared to September 2009.
The volume of registered fuel sales in the Gaza Strip continued to decline in October 2009. And there was a significant decline in the amount of imported cooking gas with 1, 5 tons allowed in (31.91% of the volume allowed in September 2009). During the reporting period. 36,500 liters of
petrol were imported for the private sector. This month, the newly installed fuel pipelines at kerem Shalom started to function with cooking gas (213 ton).
The Palestinian CPI reached 126.22 in October 2009, a decrease of 0.05% compared to September 2009, with most of the increase being experienced in West Bank. Increases were recorded in the Textiles, Clothing and Footwear sector (0.60%), in the Medical Care group (0.60%) in the Housing sector (0.93%) and in Miscellaneous goods and services (0.89% each). Food and soft drinks
experienced a 0.23% decline.


October 2009 data indicates an increase in the total number of the imported truckloads to the Gaza Strip by approximately 9%, compared to September 2009 (2,355 vs. 2,168). Karni crossing has remained closed since 12 June 2007 for the movement of goods in and out of Gaza. The single conveyor belt/chute for cereals and animal feed at Kani, was open for a total of 7 days and a total of 597 truckloads of animal feed (58%), and wheat (42%) entering Gaza via that conveyor belt. Of the 1,694 truckloads entering Gaza during the month through Karem Shalom (Karm Abu Salem), 272 (or 16.06%) were designated for humanitarian aid agencies and the remaining 1,422 (or 83.94%) were for the private sector. Food items made up the majority of imported goods (1,272.5truckloads, or 75%) while 421.5 truckloads, or 25%, were for non food items.



For further information please contact: Gaza Strip: Raed Raqeb raqeb@un.org



The number of new company registrations is used as a proxy indicator for the vitality of the local economy as well as the ability of the local economy to create new employment. New company registrations in the West Bank increased by 127.27% compared to September 2009. When compared to pre-Intifada levels, new company registrations have dropped by approximately 23.58%. As for Gaza, figures from the Ministry of Economy in Ramallah show that no new companies were registered, while data from the authorities in Gaza indicate 23 new registered companies for October 2009. If considering data from authorities in Gaza, the number of newly registered companies in Gaza an
increased by approximately 76.92% compared to September 2009.


Similar to new company registrations, the area licensed for new construction is also used as a proxy indicator for economic vitality. October 2009 data shows an increase in the area licensed for new construction of approximately 9.95% compared to the previous month in the West Bank. When compared to pre intifada levels, area licensed for new construction has decreased by 41.88%.



Disaggregating bank credit by the type of credit, the data shows an increase in loans and overdrafts. Loans currently represent 66.4% of all credit extended compared to only 41% in the pre-Intifada period.


Disaggregating bank credit by borrowing an entity shows that consumer lending has experienced a decrease of approximately 3.56% in Q3-2009 compared to Q2-2009.



Bank deposits for the Q3-2009 indicate increased in public sector deposits of approximately 22.01% and an increase in private sector deposits of 4.19% compared with Q2-2009.

In a functioning economy, an increase in the loans versus deposits ratio is perceived as a positive sign, as monies are not saved but invested or consumed, each of which acts as a stimulant for the economy. Since September 2006, this ratio had steadily declined in the oPt signaling little optimism in the prospects for the Palestinian economy,. Q3-2009 figures however marked the second quarterly increase after two years of decline, with a 7.68% jump from Q2-2009.



Similar to bank credit and deposits, data on the Palestinian stock exchange is used as a proxy indicator of Palestinian perceptions vis-à-vis the state of the national economy. Data for October 2009 shows a decline in terms of value of shares traded of approximately 44.79% and in terms of
number of stocks traded of approximately 8.26%. The Al-Quds index increased by 0.25%.


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